FFAC Citations

Factory Farming Basics


Marketing Old MacDonald:

Photo: http://animal.agwired.com/2008/09/03/foster-farms-now-crystal/



“Animal Feeding Operations” USDA, Natural Resources Conservation Service

Web .nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/plantsanimals/livestock/afo/

All photos public domain from Wikimedia Commons

A Brief History of Poultry

Technology Innovation

The Chicken of Tomorrow:

Jeannie Hudkins.  “Eat Like You Give a Damn: for the animals, for your health, for the planet” 2013, Mill City Press, Minneapolis, pp. 4-5



9 billion animals:

”Farm Animal Statistics: Slaughter Totals." Humane Society of the United States.  2016.

Web. humanesociety.org/news/resources/research/stats_slaughter_totals.html

99% of all animal products:

“New poll shows majority uncomfortable with animal farming despite eating turkeys for Thanksgiving”, Sentience Institute. November 2017. Web.





Chickens produce 300 eggs/year, that’s 3x natural amount:

“History of Egg Production.” American Egg Board. Incredible Edible Egg. 2007. Web.http://www.incredibleegg.org/egg_facts_history2.html

Photo: Animal Place


“Animal Husbandry Guidelines for U.S. Egg-Laying Flocks”  United Egg Producers 2017, p. 9

Web. uepcertified.com

Photos: http://www.humanemyth.org/images/1059.1.jpg


Video (debeaking): Undercover investigation by Mercy for Animals

67 square inches FF statistic:

“Animal Husbandry Guidelines for U.S. Egg-Laying Flocks”, United Egg Producers,  2017, p. 19

Web. uepcertified.com

Photo 1: Wikimedia Commons

Photo 2: Compassion Over Killing

Chickens live for 6-8 years & slaughtered at 1-2 years old FF statistic:

Berry, Joe. “Often Asked Questions about Poultry and Eggs.” Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service, Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. Web.


% of eggs from caged hens statistic:

United Egg Producers, “Animal Husbandry Guidelines for U.S. Egg-Laying Flocks”  2017

Web. uepcertified.com

Photo: Animal Place

250 million male layers discarded each year:

“No More Culls? Male Layer Chicks Might Soon Be Spared Death Sentence”  The Poultry Site. 2017, Web thepoultrysite.com/articles/3693/no-more-culls-male-layer-chicks-might-soon-be-spared-death-sentence/

Photo: Humane League Labs

Photo: kittybloger.wordpress.com/2012/06/17/kitty-gives-baby-chick-a-piggy-back-ride/

Photo: Animal Place

Broilers grow so rapidly:

Martin, D. “Researcher Studying Growth-Induced Diseases in Broilers.” Feedstuffs. 1997. Print.

Average weight increase, drop in time to market, daily feed requirements:

William, Boyd. “Making Meat: Science, Technology, and American Poultry Production,” Technology and Culture. 2001. (cited from Foer 106).

Daily growth rate increase:

Knowles, T.G. “Leg Disorders in Broiler Chickens: Prevalence, Risk Factors and Prevention.” PLoS ONE. 2008. (cited from Foer 48). http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0001545

Photo: Food, Inc.

Broiler chickens severely crippled:

Kestin, S.C. “Prevalence of leg weakness in broiler chickens and its relationship with genotype.” Veterinary Record. 29 Aug. 1992: p.131, pp. 190-194. Print.

90% broiler chickens can’t walk normally:

Kestin, S.C. “Prevalence of leg weakness in broiler chickens and its relationship with genotype.” Veterinary Record. 29 Aug. 1992: p.131, pp.190-194. Print.

Photo  chickenrescueandrehabilitation.com/2010/09/

Workers crate 105 chickens in 3.5 min:

“Blood, Sweat, and Fear: Workers’ Rights in US Meat and Poultry Plants.” New York: Human Rights Watch. 2004. (cited from Foer 104).

30% birds arriving with freshly broken bones:

T.G. Knowles. “Handling and Transport of Spent Hens,” World’s Poultry Science Journal. 1994. pp.. 60-61 (cited from Foer 132).

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

“Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter.“ USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service. Web. nal.usda.gov/awic/humane-methods-slaughter-act

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Slaughter (chickens):

“A Critical Review of Electrical Water-Bath Stun Systems for Poultry Slaughter and Recent Developments in Alternative Technologies”, Humane Society Institute for Science and Policy Animal Studies Repository, 2010. Web.



“The Need for Legislation and Elimination of Electrical Immobilization”. United Poultry Concerns



Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Cage free:

“Cage-Free vs. Battery-Cage Eggs.” The Humane Society of the United States. http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/confinement_farm/facts/cage-free_vs_battery-cage.html

Photo: Wikimedia commons


Free range:

“Fact Sheet: Meat and Poultry Labeling Terms.” USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service. Apr. 2011. Web. http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/food-safety-education/get-answers/food-safety-fact-sheets/food-labeling/meat-and-poultry-labeling-terms/meat-and-poultry-labeling-terms

Photo: Animal Legal Defense Fund


Organic Label:

“Labeling Organic Products.” Agricultural Marketing Service. USDA. Web.


Photo: USDA


Photo: Herbert T, via Wikipedia


Photo: Animal Place


Artificial insemination:

Webb, D.W. “Artificial Insemination of Dairy Cattle.” University of Florida Electronic Data Information.Reviewed June 2003. Web. ufdc.ufl.edu/IR00004730/00001

Photo: http://www.thebeefsite.com/articles/721/artificial-insemination-for-beef-cattle



Clip from the Documentary Adieu veau, vache, cochon, couvee by Beatrice Limare



Calves separated from their mothers soon after birth:

“Early separation of cow and calf has long-term effects on social behavior”. Science Daily. April 2015. Web sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150428081801.htm



Cows milked 3 times per day to 10-12 months:

“Is three-times-a-day milking for you?”. Michigan State University Extension. June 2011. Web.


Photo: Gunnar Richter Namenlos.net via  Wikimedia Commons


  Photo: indulgy.com/post/eUcFGkIGf2/sweet-calves-kissing


Gestation Crate:

“Crammed into Gestation Crates.”  Humane Society of the United States. 2014. Web. humanesociety.org/issues/confinement_farm/facts/gestation_crates.html

Farrowing Crate:

Philpot, Tom. “You won’t believe what pork producers do to pregnant pigs.” Mother Jones. July/August 2013 article. Web. http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/06/pregnant-sows-gestation-crates-abuse

Sows showing signs of insanity:

Blackwell, “Production Practices and Well-Being: Swine.” (Cited from Foer Pgs. 183-187).


Piglet tails and testicles removed without anesthetic:

“The Use of Drugs in Food Animals: Benefits and Risks,” National Academy of Science. 1999. (Cited from Foer 168).

Castrated meat:

“Castration of pigs”, Virginia Cooperative Extension Newsletter Archive, Livestock Update, January 2008





Common Farming Practice Exemption:

“Large-scale farmed animal abuse and neglect: law and its enforcement” Animal Law and Ethics, Issue 63, May 2011.

Ag-gag laws

“Ag-gag Laws Keep Animal Cruelty Behind Closed Doors”. The Humane Society of the United States. Web.  humanesociety.org/issues/campaigns/factory_farming/fact-sheets/ag_gag.html

Photo: http://cuteanimalimages.com/super-cute-piglet/


Photo: Wikimedia Commons


Fish stocks fully fished or overfished:

“Future of world fish production depends on urgent action to combat falling fish stocks” Oceana,

July 2016, Web. oceana.org/press-center/press-releases/future-world-fish-production-depends-urgent-action-combat-falling-fish

Photo: Wikimedia Commons


Video: Ocean Defender- Hawaii




“Bycatch Threats” World Wildlife Foundation. Web. worldwildlife.org/threats/bycatch

“Reducing Bycatch in Shrimp Trawlers: Could efforts in North Carolina Provide a Solution?” The Fish Site April 2016. Web. thefishsite.com/articles/reducing-bycatch-in-shrimp-trawlers-could-efforts-in-north-carolina-provide-a-solution

Photo: http://www.bycatch.moonfruit.com/



“Effects of Aquaculture or Fish Farming on Ocean Health”. The Seafood Watch Program of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Web.


Photo: Wikimedia Commons



“Thailand: Forced Labor, Trafficking Persist in Fishing Fleets”, Human Rights Watch January 2018. Web.



Social Justice


Cumulative trauma injuries / slaughterhouse workers:

“Inspection Guidance for Poultry Slaughtering and Poultry Processing Establishments”, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, United States Department of Labor. October 2015

Web. osha.gov/dep/enforcement/poultry_processing_10282015.html

No health insurance:

“Slaughterhouse workers” Food Empowerment Project



“Amputations abound at Tyson Foods, OSHA records shed more light on industrial food production” The Pump Handle. January 2016. Web.


Diapers in slaughterhouses:

“Poultry Workers, Denied Bathroom Breaks, Wear Diapers: Oxfam Report” nbc news May 2016. Web. nbcnews.com/business/business-news/poultry-workers-denied-bathroom-breaks-wear-diapers-oxfam-report-n572806

Photo: USDA



McWilliams, James. “PTSD in the Slaughterhouse.” The Texas Observer. 07 Feb 2012. Web. texasobserver.org/ptsd-in-the-slaughterhouse/


Cleaning Crew:

“The American meat industry’s dark secret” Business Insider, January 2018. Web.



National Beef Plant:

“Deaths of Three at Kansas Meat Packing Plant Investigated.” Oaklahoman. June, 1991. Web. newsok.com/deaths-of-three-at-kansas-meat-packing-plant-investigated/article/235974

Factory farms are destroying Communities

Drive small farmers out of business:

“A few companies dominate American meat Industry: Washington Post opinion”, Oregon Live, The Oregonian , November 23 2013. Web.


CAFOs drive down property values:

“Examples of Properties Devalued by Factory Farms: Studies and Reports”, Factory Farm Tax Protest. Web.


Health problems:

“What’s Wrong With Factory Farms?”, Factory Farm Map, Food and Water Watch. Web.



Produce Workers

Legally employ children as young as 12:

‘Child Labor Bulletin 102. Child Labor Requirements in Agricultural Occupations Under the Fair Labor Standards Act”, U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division. Web.


Work 42 hours per week but living at poverty level:

“Low Wages”, National Farm Worker Ministry. Web


10,000-20,000 workers diagnosed with “pesticide poisoning’ every year:

NIOSH Pesticide Poisoning Monitoring Program Protects Farmworkers”, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web.



Food Access. Where the money goes: The Foods that Subsidies Support

“U.S. touts fruits and vegetables while subsidizing animals that become meat”, Health & Science, Washington Post, October 3 2011. Web.



Racial Disparities:

“Food Equity: How Structural Racism Reduces Sustainability in the Food System”, Sustainability Institute, July 26 2016


Congress could cut another $8.7 billion in food stamp benefits”, MSNBC, January 9 2014. Web.



Slide 51

Photo: http://www.sunnyskyz.com/happy-pictures/162/Bunny-and-Piglet-Love





“Swine-flu outbreak could be linked to Smithfield factory farms”, Grist, April 26 2009. Web.




MRSA kills more Americans a year than AIDS:

University of Chicago Medicine MRSA Research Center. Web.


People living near factory farms nearly 3x more likely to be MRSA carriers:

“Residential proximity to large numbers of swine in feeding operations is associated with increased risk of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus colonization at time of hospital admission in rural Iowa veterans.”  Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol, February 2014. Web. www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24442084

45% of workers on pig factory farms tested positive for MRSA:

“Swine Farming is a Risk Factor for Infection With and High Prevalence of Carriage of Multidrug-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus” Clin Infect Dis. July 1 2015. Web.



Infected Meat:

“Superbugs Invade America’s Supermarket Meat”, Environmental Working Group, April 15 2013. Web.



Leading Causes of Death:

“Leading Causes of Death”, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web.



Heart Disease

Vegetarians have a 32% lower risk of death from heart disease:

“Vegetarianism can reduce risk of heart disease by up to a third”, University of Oxford, January 30 2013




Going vegan could prevent type 2 diabetes”


People with diets rich in animal products were 4x more likely to die of cancer:

“Low protein intake is associated with a major reduction in IGF-1,cancer, and overall mortality in the 65 and younger but not older population”, Cell Metab. , March 4 2014. Web.



Consistent positive association between meat consumption and obesity:

“Diets High in Meat Consumption Associated with Obesity”, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, September 3 2009. Web.



Eating 50g of processed meat a day increases the chance of developing colorectal cancer by 18%:

“World Health Organization Says Processed Meat Causes Cancer”, American Cancer Society, October 26 2015. Web.



Doctors catching on:

“Nutritional Update for Physicians: Plant-Based Diets”, Perm.J, 2013 Spring. Web.


Countries affected by lactose intolerance:

“Lactose intolerance”, Genetics Home Reference, U.S. National Library of Medicine. Web.






One of the most destructive industries:

“The Triple Whopper Environmental Impact of Global Meat Production” Time. December 2013. Web.



Animal Feed:

“Animal Feed” Sustainable Table, GRACE Communications Foundation. Web.



Animals: a really inefficient source of food

“Redefining agricultural yields: from tonnes to people nourished per hectare”. IOPscience, August 2013.

Web. iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/8/3/034015/meta;jsessionid=47AFAE9A599CA8A01466213D8B8D2B51.c5.iopscience.cld.iop.org


Feeding the world:

“Redefining agricultural yields: from tonnes to people nourished per hectare”. IOPscience, August 2013.

Web. iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/8/3/034015/meta;jsessionid=47AFAE9A599CA8A01466213D8B8D2B51.c5.iopscience.cld.iop.org



“The role of pasture and soybean in deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon”. IOPscience, April 2010. Web. iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/5/2/024002/meta


Percentage of mammals on Earth:

Carrington, Damian. “Humans just 0.01% of all life but have destroyed 83%of wild mammals” study The Guardian, May 2018. Web.



Grass-fed? Think again:

“Grazed and confused? New report gives the lay of the land on grazing livestock’s climate impact”. The Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food. October 2017.



Most GMO crops in the US are fed to animals on factory farms:

Van Eenennaam, Alison L., and Amy E. Young. " Feeding GMO Crops to Livestock - Beef Research New - Beef Issues Quarterly.’ Department of Animal Sciences, University of California, Davis, Mar. 2016. Web. beefissuesquarterly.com/beefissuesquarterly.aspx?id=5672

"Recent Trends in GE Adoption." USDA ERS. N.p., 3 Nov. 2016. Web. 11 Apr. 2017.

"Contribution of GM Technology to the Livestock Sector." ISAAA. N.p., Aug. 2016. Web. 11 Apr. 2017.

Meat production accounts for over ⅓ of all pesticide use:

Steinfeld, Henning, Pierre Gerber, Tom Wassenaar, Vincent Castel, Mauricio Rosales, and Cees De Haan. Livestock's Long Shadow: Environmental Issues and Options. Publication. Rome: FAO, 2006. Print.

Pesticides are toxic:

Neonicitinoid colony collapse disorder: Dwyer, Marge. "Study Strengthens Link between Neonicotinoids and Collapse of Honey Bee Colonies." Harvard School of Public Health. N.p., 9 May 2014. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.

Neonic use on crops fed to livestock: LaJeunesse, Sara. "Rapid Increase in Neonicotinoid Insecticides Driven by Seed Treatments." Penn State University. Penn State University, 2 Apr. 2015. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.

Pesticide poisoning in workers: Dearen, Jason. "Why U.S. Farmworkers Keep Getting Poisoned by Pesticides." St. Louis Post Dispatch. N.p., 3 Feb. 2016. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.


80% of antibiotics are used on animals:

Johns Hopkins, Center for a Liveable Future, “Food Production and Public Health”, 2012



Skipping one gallon of milk equal to skipping one month’s  worth of showers:

Alex Park and Julia Lurie, “It takes HOW much water to make Greek yogurt??”, Mother Jones March 2014



Farm animals in the US produce 100x as much waste as the entire US human population:

Gerba, C. P., & Smith, J. E. (2004).  Sources of pathogenic microorganisms and their fate during land application of wastes. Journal of Environmental Quality, 34(1), 42-48. Retrieved August 27, 2012.

Cited on sustainabletable.org/906/waste-management

Drone Video:

Citizen Drone Project. www.factoryfarmdrones.com

Liquified waste is sprayed onto surrounding land:

Manure spraying: "Understanding Manure Irrigation." University of Wisconsin - Extension. N.p., 14 Apr. 2016. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

Exempt from the Clean Air Act:

“Livestock emissions still up in the air” Chemical and Engineering News, April 2, 2018


Leading cause of water pollution in the U.S.:

“Unified National Strategy for Animal Feeding Operations”, U.S. Department of Agriculture & U.S. Environmental Agency, March 9, 1999



“About Eutrophication” World Resources Institute


Gulf of Mexico dead zone is the largest ever recorded:

“Gulf of Mexico ‘dead zone’ is the largest ever measured”, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, August 2, 2017



Meat production makes more greenhouse gases than all the planes, trains, and cars in the world combined:

"Livestock a Major Threat to Environment." Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. N.p., 29 Nov. 2006. Web. 11 Apr. 2017.

Ruminant animals produce methane: "Monitoring Methane Emissions from Agriculture and Dairy Farming." Environmental Technology. N.p., 2017. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

More potent than CO2: "Overview of Greenhouse Gases." EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, 14 Feb. 2017. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

Animal waste releases nitrous oxide: Costa, J. R., C. Li, C. E. Cerri, and C. C. Cerri. "Measuring and Modeling Nitrous Oxide and Methane Emissions from Beef Cattle Feedlot Manure Management: First Assessments under Brazilian Condition." Journal of Environmental Science and Health. Part. B, Pesticides, Food Contaminants, and Agricultural Wastes. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

More potent than CO2: "Understanding Global Warming Potentials" EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, 14 Feb. 2017. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

The top 5 meat and dairy companies combined:

“Emissions impossible: How big meat and dairy are heating up the planet”, GRAIN and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), June 28 2018. Web.


The top 20 meat and dairy companies combined:

Shefali Sharma, “Big Meat and Dairy are Heating Up our Planet” Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, July 2018




Substituting beans for beef:

Harwatt H. et al, “Substituting beans for beef as a contribution toward US climate targets” Climatic Change, 2017



If everyone in the US ate no meat or cheese just one day per week, it would be like not driving 91 billion miles, or taking 7.6 billion cars off the road: "Reducing Your Footprint." Reducing Your Footprint - 2011 Meat Eaters Guide | Meat Eater's Guide to Climate Change + Health | Environmental Working Group. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

Global warming, Food insecurity:

“Feeding 9 Billion” National Geographic, May 2014


Photo: :http://favim.com/image/228905/




Leaders agree:

“Our Nutrient World: The challenge to produce more food and energy with less pollution. Global Overview of Nutrient Management”, United Nations Environment Programme, October 31 and November 1 2018.



Springmann, Marco et al, “Options for keeping the food system within environmental limits” Nature, 2018



Top Athletes:

“Kendrick Farris, The Only Male U.S. Weightlifter in the Olympics, is Totally Vegan”, HuffPost. October 2016.


“This Drastic Diet Change Helped Venus Williams Fight her Autoimmune Condition”. Health. January 2017


“NFL Veganism? David Carter, Griff Whalen have broken the mold”. NFL. September 2016


“Celtics’ Kyrie Irving on the benefits of his vegan diet”. Boston. November 2017.



Save money:

“A Vegetarian Diet Can Save You Around $750 Each Year When Compared to a Meat - Eating Diet”. Medical Daily. October 2015. Web. medicaldaily.com/vegetarian-diet-can-save-you-around-750-each-year-when-compared-meat-eating-diet-356670


Plant-based foods: a growing market:

“U.S. Plant Based Foods Industry Tops $5 Billion in Annual Sales”. Plant Based Foods Association. March 2017. Web.


“Dairy Alternative Market is anticipated to cross USD 34 Billion by 2024”. PR Newswire. January 2018. Web. prnewswire.com/news-releases/dairy-alternatives-market-is-anticipated-to-cross-usd-34-billion-by-2024-300583922.html

“Get Ready For A Meatless Meat Explosion, As Big Food Gets On Board”. Fast Company. December 2017. Web. fastcompany.com/40508181/get-ready-for-a-meatless-meat-explosion-as-big-food-gets-on-board


A growing trend:

“Vegan in going mainstream, trend data suggest”, Food Navigator Magazine, March 17 2015.Web.


“Power to the Plants: the rise of plant-based eating”, Mintel.Web.



Clean Meat:

“Lab-Grown Meat May Save a Lot More than Farm Animals’ Lives”. nbc news. April 2017. Web.