In the first six weeks of their lives, chickens raised for Olive Garden’s supply chain will live through the worst suffering imaginable.
They are unable to move, not only because they have been selectively bred to grow so large, so fast that their young legs cannot hold the weight, but because they are crammed inside filthy sheds with hundreds of thousands of other birds. They are forced to lay in litter soaked in excrement, and the toxic ammonia burns their feet, chest, and lungs.
How can Olive Garden’s motto be “we’re all family here,” when thousands of birds are suffering, in some cases literally to death, for its menu items? Animal abuse is not a family value.
STEPHEN COMMENT: I feel this is one of the most important petitions you can add your signature to.
Tyson Foods is a corporation on the Dark Side. It was a pioneer in conceiving of factory farming, in developing its operations, its brutality and its scope. Over eight decades, it has crushed tens if not hundreds of thousands of small family farms and ranches. Tyson Foods has expanded its operations worldwide bringing the factory farming model into other countries with similar results. There may be no other corporation on the planet that has caused as much environmental damage as Tyson Foods and the cruelty and suffering it has inflicted on countless billions of animals is probably unsurpassed.
This petition demands that this company’s executives begin to take stock of something far more important than their company’s bottom line: the role Tyson will play going forward in either degrading the planet beyond recovery and in the suffering of billions more helpless animals in its factory farms – or not.
Over 17,000 of us have signed this new petition. You honor our environment, our planet, you show compassion for farmed animals, and you honor yourself by doing so as well.
Despite years of pressure, Tyson Foods, since acquiring Hillshire Brands, is one of the few remaining Big Food companies which still fails to adopt a responsible palm oil procurement policy. It’s too busy driving the explosion of factory farming around the world.
In the last 20 years small-scale farming has been largely replaced with factory farms -- industrial operations that confine thousands of helpless animals in horrendous conditions that lead to worker abuse, massive water contamination and hazardous air pollutants that endanger human health, as well as unbelievably cruel treatment of animals.
As one of the most influential players in the global processed meat market, and one of the biggest corporate laggards that refuses to deal with its Conflict Palm Oil problem, Tyson Foods must adopt a responsible food policy with commitments on responsible production of palm oil and meat. We can support family farmers, local economies, and animal welfare by transforming Tyson Foods.
I’m a West Virginia poultry farmer, and I’m asking for your help. I recently went public about problems in the poultry industry such as diseased birds and genetic deformities. My story was featured in the New York Times. But I took a major risk in coming forward: most farmers in my situation are afraid to speak out against injustices and company wrongdoing because the poultry industry and its lobby are so powerful. Help me keep the poultry industry honest and make it possible for farmers like me to do their jobs. Tell the Senate to support farmer safeguards under USDA’s Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA).
STEPHEN COMMENT: Nearly 20,000 people have signed this petition directed to the Idaho State Senate. You should too.
After California passed laws phasing out the cruel confinement of chickens in battery cages, Idaho saw an opportunity to entice producers to relocate there “where there are no restrictions.” For Katie Ernesto, “These kinds of actions show that there is little to no concern for the welfare of these animals in Idaho’s egg industry.”
This petition reminds each Idaho State Senator that eliminating animal cruelty should be a priority in their state, that there are a lot of us who are concerned about this, and that we’re paying attention.
Idaho does not have any laws regarding the use of battery cages and the welfare of animals. In 2010 when California passed propositions regarding battery cages, Idaho producers have been baiting these industries to move to Idaho where there are no restrictions. These kinds of actions show that there is little to no concern for the welfare of these animals in Idaho’s egg industry.
While our current industry may be small, we cannot let it grow without making sure that animals are treated properly. Please sign this petition to help ban battery cages in Idaho and give egg-laying hens a better life.
STEPHEN COMMENT: More than 63,000 people have signed this petition, directed to Secretary Tom Vilsack and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). You should too.
It is very important that the USDA’s National Organic Program create clear, stringent, uncompromised definitions of what constitutes organic when it comes to animal products.
While this petition lacks specifics, it puts Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack - someone who has been historically very cozy with Big Ag interests - on notice that a lot of us are watching, and we want this done right.
Oregon Tilth, for over 40 years, has “led the way in organic agriculture and sustainable production methods” and has had a leading role in the formation of the USDA National Organic Program for agriculture. They promote “a holistic approach to food production and encourage producers to create organic systems that improve soils, preserve natural resources and minimize public health risks.” Their “work with processors, handlers and marketers of organic products ensures the organic integrity of products from the farm to the table, and everything in between.”
Similar standards must now be adopted by the USDA in its Organic certification standards and guidelines for animal products.
A current running through faCE ISSUE 7 is the demonstrated reluctance of factory farming operations to change their practices. When forced to by legislation or legal consequence, or incentivized to by changes in consumer demand, their inclination is either to take the path of absolutely minimal mandated change, to cheat, or to game the system by having their industry interest groups apply pressure to compromise new standards. Their powerful, well financed, industry lobbyists apply pressure to effectively redefine – and denude - the meaning of core terms like ‘Organic,’ ‘Natural’ and ‘Humane’ to the point where they become virtually meaningless.
We must pressure Tom Vilsack and the USDA to create and implement a strict definition of the term ‘Organic’ as it applies to animal products. One no less stringent and complete than the Oregon Tilth definitions of ‘Organic’ applying to agricultural produce.
These high standards for the term ‘Organic’ must insure a healthy, humanely raised animal product – which is what more and more consumers are insisting upon.
Factory farmers don’t care about the suffering and lifelong misery of the animals in their care. They don’t – or they would’ve invested their life’s time in a different line of work. Tom Vilsack, based on his history, doesn’t seem to care much about animal welfare either.
This petition reminds him that there are a lot of us who do. And we’re paying attention.
When something is labeled as Organic, we may often wonder what the real standards of such a label are. Such is the case regarding animal welfare and the ASPCA is asking for our help in assuring that the USDA be more transparent and abiding when it comes to the Organic label.
For the past 15 years, the actual animal welfare standards have not been clear and concise with the USDA’s National Organic Program. Despite organic regulations, many organic animal products from factory farms meet no differences between organic treatment of animals or the conventional methods. The USDA is now reviewing all the specifics regarding how organic farm animals should be raised to ensure they meet the specific regulations as being Organic. It is important that the USDA Organic label meet the specified regulations for both the animals and the consumers. You can help in our efforts by signing and sharing this petition.
STEPHEN COMMENT: More than 168,000 people have signed this petition, directed to Secretary Tom Vilsack and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). You should too.
Dave Molidor, the father of a toddler and a newborn, believes, as most of us do, that consumers have a right to make informed choices about the food they’re buying and eating, and that “it’s the job of our government regulatory agencies to help us by properly labeling food that could be harmful.”
The USDA currently does not require that meat produced from animals routinely fed antibiotics be labeled accordingly. This petition seeks to change that.
The focus of faCE ISSUE 3 was the danger to all of us posed by the massive overuse of antibiotics in factory farming. Nicole McCann and Anne Meyer suggest in HUGE “FACTORY” FARMS ARE FAR BIGGER U.S. HEALTH THREAT THAN EBOLA that this may create “a home-grown medical catastrophe of our own that we’re failing to address: the erosion of antibiotic effectiveness. Doctors prescribe antibiotics to treat a broad array of infections that can otherwise prove fatal. While the drugs are being grossly overused, diminishing their power to heal, hospitals aren’t to blame — factory farms are.”
A British Government commissioned review, also part of faCE ISSUE 3, noted that, “Antimicrobial-resistant infections currently claim at least 50,000 lives each year across Europe and the US alone.” The study concludes that “resistance to antibiotics could account for 10 million deaths a year and hit global gross domestic product by 2.0 to 3.5 percent by 2050.”
We must pressure the USDA to correct it’s negligent oversight. Please sign and circulate this petition.
Most antibiotics sold in this country are fed to farmed animals rather than to treat human disease.
These antibiotics are mixed in with the food and water fed to the pigs, cows, and chickens who become the meat we eat. Often these animals are not even sick. Meat companies give low doses of antibiotics to farmed animals because it makes them grow bigger and faster on less food. These animals are also kept in confined and filthy conditions – conditions that would make them very sick if they were not all given these antibiotics preventatively.
Unfortunately, this extensive use of low dose antibiotics is helping to breed resistance in bacteria – leading to the existence of "superbugs." These superbugs create infections in people that cannot be treated by the antibiotics—and this problem is potentially the leading health crisis in the U.S.
Consumers who want to avoid meat produced with antibiotics have no way to identify such products...
STEPHEN COMMENT: In the United States in 2012, more than one third of children and adolescents were found to be overweight or obese. The percentage continues to increase each year. Each of these children is in immediate risk of cardiovascular disease including high cholesterol and high blood pressure, as well as pre-diabetes and bone-joint problems. As these children and adolescents grow into adults, they will remain at high risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, a wide range of cancers and osteoarthritis. Millions and millions of children and adolescents.
Prevention is simple: healthy eating and physical activity. Healthy eating, truly healthy eating, is essential.
This is a national tragedy. It is an infinitely costly one. Infinitely – because, while the staggering health care and medical costs caused by the consequences of obesity can be calculated, the cost of a single loss of life, let alone hundreds of thousands of lives, is immeasurable. Add in the consequences of lives shortened, lives lived achieving only limited potential due to physical debilitation, disease, depression, the social and psychological costs of obesity.
Children grow up with little say in their overall nutrition choices. Many parents remain uninformed about the food choices they continue to make for themselves and their families.
Entrenched corporate interests, big agriculture, the meat industry, the dairy industry, as well as corporations whose brand identity is producing highly processed foods, continue to fight against initiatives such as Michelle Obama’s to introduce pure healthy foods into school lunch programs across the country, and to educate children and families about nutritious organic non-processed foods.
Over 1,500,000 people have signed Jamie Oliver’s petition. His goal is 3,000,000. Let’s help him get there. Quickly and easily, your e-signature can help prompt the G20 governments to take strong initiatives to help fix the problem of childhood and adolescent obesity.
I urgently need your help to make a real difference. We’re currently facing a global obesity epidemic, with 42 million children under the age of five either overweight or obese across the world. The bottom line is the next generation will live shorter lives than their parents if nothing is done to rectify these alarming stats.
So I’m asking that you do two simple things – first, please sign this petition to show your support for compulsory practical food education in schools across the world, then, most importantly, share it via your social networks.
STEPHEN COMMENT: Welcome to the front lines. Right here. Once you witness undercover footage documenting the horrendous animal cruelty, torture and abuse commonplace among factory farms, livestock markets and throughout this industry, you’ll think twice about spending your money purchasing the products and supporting the businesses of an industry this insidious and contemptible.
Undercover investigators across the United States have, at great personal risk, succeeded in documented these conditions. Their undercover footage has led to criminal charges against workers, to state laws improving animal care and, most significantly, by increasing our awareness of the horror show that the factory farming industry really is. This footage has turned hundreds of thousands of us against factory farming with a passion.
So this industry, rather than finding ways to change, to humanely treat its animals, is promoting legislation nationwide at the state level criminalizing whistleblowing. As Alicia Graef notes in her article, The First Ag Gag Bill of the Year Is Here, “While a number of states including Montana, Kansas, North Dakota, Arkansas, Iowa, Missouri, South Carolina and Utah have also passed some form of an ag gag law, many others have tried and thankfully failed. Both Utah and Idaho’s laws are currently being challenged in federal court, and even though some have faced charges under these laws, they’re proving to be difficult to enforce.”
All of us have a right to know that animals are being treated humanely, whether at farms, livestock auctions, or at your neighborhood park. We have a right to know whether or not food safety standards are being upheld for the food we eat. Alicia observes, “this isn’t just an issue affecting animal lovers who advocate for farm animals. There is also strong opposition from other fronts ranging from food safety to free speech. Despite the ridiculousness of these types of laws, politicians are clearly going to continue to attempt to cater to agribusinesses and shield them from accountability regardless of the chilling impact these laws have on animal welfare, food safety, free speech, workers’ rights and our basic right to know where our food is coming from.”
Please look at this petition. Welcome to the front lines. This is where, quickly and easily, your signature will have an impact forcing humane change.
While ag gag laws in Idaho and Utah are being challenged in federal court, yet another state is taking up the cause to silence whistleblowers who expose cruelty at farms and slaughterhouses.
Washington state representatives Joe Schmick and J.T. Wilcox have sponsored this year's first attempt at passing an ag gag law with bill HB 1104, which was introduced this week.
The bill would make it illegal for anyone who "enters an agricultural production facility that is not open to the public and, without the facility owner’s express written consent or pursuant to judicial process or clear statutory authorization, makes audio or video recordings of the assets or conduct of an agricultural production facility’s operations …” and leave anyone found guilty under the law facing misdemeanor charges, with penalties including up to a year in jail and a $5,000 fine.
Undercover investigations have played an important role in exposing not only egregious abuse and unsanitary living conditions that farm animals are forced to endure, but have also drawn attention to standard industry practices that don’t fit into the mainstream idea of humane treatment of animals.
No state should be considering legislation that shields businesses with something to hide at the expense of animal welfare, its residents, consumer safety and the First Amendment.
Please sign the petition asking Washington lawmakers not to support whistleblower suppression legislation.
STEPHEN COMMENT: Having experienced one of the cruelest of tragedies, Everly is trying to prevent anyone else from having to suffer what she went through. Elegantly and without rancor, she is requesting one of the largest manufacturers of processed foods make an ingredient change. Just that.
With powerful understatement, Everly serves notice to Kraft/Oscar Mayer, a corporation with a long history of including unnatural ingredients in the foods they ‘create.’ If the meat in Kraft Lunchables “comes from farms that use antibiotics to feed healthy animals” is it not likely that the meat Kraft sources from these factory farms is used in its other products as well?
23,000 Americans, like Everly’s son, die every year from antibiotic-resistant bacterium.
Consumer awareness is increasing about the dangers of consuming factory-farm raised meat and dairy products. Brands like McDonald’s are shifting from tainted to toxic in consumer’s minds. A downward brand spiral often becomes a death spiral. At what point will Kraft/Oscar Mayer re-evaluate the ingredients in its ‘processed’ foods, its corporate mentality? At what point will consumer class-action litigation begin?
This is a powerful petition. Please read it and sign it.
STEPHEN COMMENT: Centerplate caters high profile events and describes itself as “one of the largest hospitality companies in the world.” It refused to stop procuring eggs from factory farm suppliers - eggs from hens cruelly kept crammed in tiny battery cages. When Amy Adams of Greenville South Carolina noticed that Centerville was based in her home state, she acted to try to change this.
She authored this petition and directed it to Centerplate’s President and CEO, Des Hague, its COO, Chris Verros, its CFO, Hadi Monavar, and its Media Contact, Ashley Luneburg.
On October 2, 2014, Amy announced “We did it! Centerplate has finally agreed to stop supporting the cruel practice of putting birds in tiny wire cages. They have also agreed to eliminate gestation crates for pregnant pigs in their supply chain. These improvements are due to the 64,000 compassionate people who signed my petition. Thanks to everyone who spoke up for these animals!”
STEPHEN COMMENT: Imagine you are a new worker at a factory farm. In this case, at one of the diary farms whose cows supply Darigold, Inc. with milk. You witness brutal widespread abuse of the cows, stricken cows forced to move, suffering with mastitis, surrendering milk from puss-oozing bleeding udders. Risking your job, you speak up to your boss, only to learn that this treatment of animals is routine, a part of factory farming. Your concern is dismissed with regard to the animals, however it’s noted with regard to you - an indication you may not last long working there. You go back to work. It’s your job, it’s how you support yourself, your family. You realize that if you cast a blind eye to the animal abuse that’s a constant all around you, your humanity, the decency inside you, will whither and die. And you can’t just walk away from these helpless suffering animals. You have to do something and you get an idea. Taking even greater risk, you decide to secretly take photographs which you deliver to the United Farm Workers. They'll present this evidence to Darigold!
Certainly, Darigold executives, when shown evidence of this cruelty, will insist on changes from their suppliers? Out of a concern for animal welfare. Or at least motivated with their company’s best interest in mind since this is EVIDENCE of widespread VERY unsanitary conditions and of CONTAMINATED milk which Darigold is purchasing, packaging and marketing for its customers to consume.
Darigold, Inc., according to the UFW, is doing nothing. Conditions on their supplier dairy farms remain unchanged. So now, the United Farm Workers, joined by the Farm to Family Coalition and the Humane Society of the United States are asking us to take this fight to Darigold by submitting this flyer, http://unitedfarm.3cdn.net/af49572419357ebc49_qrm6b5lhr.pdf to your grocery store manager, and request that they discontinue selling Darigold products.
Ask that the store manager forward this petition to corporate. Look him or her in the eye and make certain they agree to do so. Let them know that there are other supermarkets in the area that do not stock Darigold products, suggesting you don’t need much more of a reason to begin taking your business there. Write a note on the back of it if you like.
I have experience with this. When product complaints to corporate reach a certain threshold, they will take this matter very seriously. If even one supermarket or grocery chain suspends Darigold products, even temporarily, that’s news. And news can travel rapidly to the point where consumers will begin to reevaluate Darigold products and the Darigold brand.
Even stronger action would be to do what the man in the photograph is doing, handing out this information to customers. If you contact the UFW directly they can advise you on this, perhaps even provide you with the handout.
In the last two months we've shared photos that allege abuse of cows by dairies associated with Darigold Inc. We've shared these photos with Darigold as well as store chains that sell Darigold's products and with you, the consumer. Thousands have responded. However, Darigold and the stores are doing nothing. So we have come to you to ask you to take the next step.
STEPHEN COMMENT: This petition has over 265,000 signatures and is putting significant pressure on Leprino Foods, "the world's largest mozzarella cheese producer and a supplier to virtually all of the major pizza chains in the country," to take immediate action to put an end to the rampant and horrific animal cruelty at its supplier farms.
The profit Leprino Foods generates by producing and distributing its cheeses apparently trumps any concern they may have about the suffering these factory farmed animals endure.
This is a powerful petition. While increasing pressure on Leprino Foods to make changes, this petition has already achieved two significant objectives. By presenting the Leprino executives listed below with this undercover footage, they are no longer unaware, or can honestly claim going forward to be unaware, that this rampant animal cruelty exists at their supplier farms. If they fail to act to stop it, they become complicit with it. We have to hope that the executives this petition is addressed to are people of conscience. In addition, this petition serves notice: over 265,000 of us have been motivated to date to add our names to this petition. 265,000 people who will be purchasing (or choose not to purchase) pizzas going forward. That's a lot of pies. And I strongly suspect that, like me, the majority of people motivated to sign this petition will be alerting their friends and family, their social networks.
Click the link to change.org to view this petition. You do not need to view the video if you feel you aren’t ready to. Petitions like this one are powerful tools for change. They just take a moment to sign. Please do.
STEPHEN COMMENT: This petition closed with over 600,000 signatures and put significant pressure on Walmart to stop purchasing and selling factory farmed pork.
Now, Walmart doesn’t want to budge on this. Walmart profits providing customers inexpensive meat. They value that profit over health risks passed on to their customers by consuming factory farmed meat. That profit trumpsany concern they may have about the suffering these factory farmed animals endure. Walmart executives may even rationalize that many of these petition signers are not Walmart customers. Many many are. And almost everyone who signs this petition has alerted their friends and family.
Even though this one is now closed, you can still click the link to change.org to view it. You do not need to view the video if you feel you aren’t ready to. Petitions like this one are powerful tools for change. They just take a moment to sign. Please do.
Walmart’s torture of pigs is a real American horror story. Driven mad from boredom and stress, pregnant pigs confined to filthy gestation crates endure nightmarish conditions I would not wish on my worst enemies. Walmart must stop supporting cruel gestation crates.