• BNLP

New Proposed Legislation Aims to End Factory Farming by 2040...

Updated: Jul 15, 2020

Large factory farms are harmful to rural communities, public health, and the environment and we must immediately begin to transition to a more sustainable and humane system.


This is what U.S. senator from New Jersey Corey Booker stated recently in his quest to end this exploitative industry that harms people, animals and the planet. Senator Booker just unveiled the Farm System Reform Act of 2019 where proposed legislation would help break up factory farm monopolies, whose business practices harm both animals and humans. Among other things, the bill aims to end concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) by 2040, hold factory farms accountable for their pollution, and provide voluntary buyouts for farmers looking to transition out of factory farming.


Large factory farms are harmful to rural communities, public health, and the environment and we must immediately begin to transition to a more sustainable and humane system.

Currently, just a handful of companies control the business of livestock and poultry processing. For example, most farmers who raise chickens do so on a contract basis for major meat companies, such as Tyson Foods. While these companies own the animals, the contract farmers are forced to take much of the financial risk. Many farmers are akin to “indentured servants” in these relationships. They take on massive debt, often struggle to pay it off, and have little to no control over their operations.

This is what happened to Mike Weaver, a former contract chicken farmer for Pilgrim’s Pride in West Virginia who went public with his concerns over the treatment of the animals in his care. Weaver said in a statement: “This legislation by Senator Booker has been a long time coming. … Huge multi-national meatpackers and corporate integrators care about making money, period.”

Weaver quit raising chickens and now uses his old chicken barns to grow industrial hemp, a business venture that he is confident will earn him more income than chicken farming did and employ four times as many people in his region, which is desperate for new jobs.


Huge factory farms also produce massive amounts of animal waste and other pollution. Runoff from factory farms contaminates rivers and groundwater, threatening ecosystems and endangering people and wildlife. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, large factory farms may produce up to 1.37 billion tons of animal waste each year and are not required to maintain treatment facilities. The proposed legislation supports the American Public Health Association’s recommendation to halt all new or expanding factory farms.


5 views0 comments