Week of Action: Transition to a More Sustainable and Equitable Food System - Waterkeeper

Week of Action: Transition to a More Sustainable and Equitable Food System

By: Waterkeeper Alliance

This action notice is updated from a notice originally shared in September 2020.

We require farms and food systems that are resilient, healthy, and fair for everyone. The current factory farm production system pollutes air and water, creates dangerous and unfair working conditions, harms independent farmers and rural communities, and makes our food less safe. That is why we must take immediate action to reform the corporate-controlled industrial production system.

In July, Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced the Farm System Reform Act of 2021 (S. 2332) which was also introduced to the House by Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) (H.R. 4421).

This critical legislation would:

  • Ban new construction and expansion of large concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and phase out existing large CAFOs by 2040.
  • Provide a voluntary buyout program for contract farms that want to transition from the corporate-controlled system to more sustainable activities such as raising pasture-based livestock, growing specialty crops, or organic commodity production.
  • Hold multinational corporations like Smithfield Foods and Tyson Foods responsible for the pollution created by the animals they own, rather than shifting that responsibility to contract farmers or the public.
  • Strengthen the Packers & Stockyards Act to better protect farmers and ranchers from unfair, discriminatory, monopolistic, and anti-competitive practices.
  • Restore mandatory Country of Origin Labeling for beef and pork, and including dairy products.

For far too long, the industrial animal agriculture system has harmed farmers, workers, and communities and polluted our nation’s waterways with pathogens, excess nutrients, and harmful algal blooms. Transitioning away from the corporate CAFO model to a fair, competitive system that supports independent farmers is essential to protecting clean water and establishing a fair, healthy food production system.

What You Can Do

Please use this form to email your U.S. representative and senators urging them to cosponsor and support the Farm System Reform Act. If any of your members of Congress are already cosponsors, our system will instead generate a “thank you” message.