This week Farm Forward, along with a coalition of more than 50 organizations, called on Congress to prevent corporate factory farm companies from receiving COVID-19 relief funds, and instead to direct funds to small and midsize farmers and food chain workers who have been disproportionately impacted by the crisis.
Our letter asks Congressional leaders to:
- Prohibit industrial animal agriculture operations and corporate parents from receiving any COVID-19 bailout funding.
- Support small and mid-size farmers to continue producing food and keeping their farms operational.
- Protect food and farm workers.
- Put a priority on ensuring food security and access to a range of healthy produce for those most vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19 and the dislocation it’s causing.
- Oppose any efforts to weaken or waive environmental regulations for industrial agriculture.
- Ensure that recovery funds provide long-term security for small farmers and invest in a just and equitable transition.
- Invest in public health, food security and small farmers by increasing the accessibility of plant-based foods and addressing food waste.
Industrial livestock producers benefit from huge financial subsidies and regulatory advantages relative to other food producers. COVID-19 economic relief and investments should prioritize an equitable and sustainable food system rather than bailout consolidated meat, poultry, and dairy companies. We can and must invest in the food production systems that build resilience, conserve water, protect biodiversity, promote soil health, and prioritize animal welfare.
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