Lobbyists Conspired to Confine Chickens to Factory Farms
Consumers Fight Back through Marketplace Activism
Reacting to the close of a 90-day public comment period on July 13, the nation’s preeminent organic industry watchdog harshly criticized the USDA for what they called a “giveaway” to factory farm interests masquerading as organic. The Cornucopia Institute suggested that consumers reaffirm their support for organic family-scale farmers by “taking the law into their own hands” and seeking out truly authentic organic eggs, produced humanely.
The rule elicited comments from over 5,000 citizens, lobbyists and organic stakeholders. The animal welfare rule has been one of the most prominent controversies in the history of the organic movement, sparked by USDA inaction that allows as many as two million “organic” birds to be confined on giant concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). Advocates assert that federal law clearly requires “access to the outdoors.”
Cornucopia policy experts and scientists claim that the options presented in the USDA’s draft rule could confine birds to as little as one square foot indoors and only require farms to provide two square feet of “pasture” outdoors, half of which could be covered with concrete. Read Full Article »