Living in a large city such as Indianapolis, many residents do not have to consider the harmful effects of large farms housing hundreds or even thousands animals next door, but for residents throughout the state of Indiana, living with a Confined Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) as a neighbor is not an ideal situation.
In fact, nothing is worse than having a crappy neighbor, literally, so 2010 Indiana CAFO Watch Conference organizer Barbara Sha Cox hopes to educate Hoosiers about CAFOs, teach residents how to speak to government officials about the issue and learn how to network with grassroots organizations.
"Its important for everyone because when you are confining that many animals together, you are finding that the outcome is the same with humans. They have to use more antibiotics in the feed to keep them healthy. So in the end that will come to the product you buy in the grocery store," Cox said. "Everyone is affected, either at the grocery store, through the water and by compassion for fellow man."
Federal law defines Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) as "agricultural operations where animals are kept and raised in confined situations. AFOs congregate animals, feed, manure and urine, dead animals and production operations on a small land area." However, CAFOs are larger. Indiana law defines CAFO's as "any animal feeding operation engaged in the confined feeding of at least 300 cattle, or 600 swine or sheep, or 30,000 fowl, such as chickens, turkeys or other poultry."
After hearing about the harmful air pollutants the factory farms produce, NUVO wanted a closer look at CAFOs and at Cox. In "Barbara Sha Cox leads the statewide fight against CAFOs" by NUVO's Steven Higgs and "CAFO trouble: Downwind of the big dairy farm" by NUVO's Dan Ferber, we learned about the up-rise against CAFOs and harmful affects on human health by these large factory farms.
Sponsored by the Socially Responsible Agricultural Project, the goal of the 2010 Indiana CAFO Watch Conference is to educate the public about the problems caused by factory farms, while helping communities protect themselves from the devastating impacts of the farms. But the project does not stop there; another main goal is to provide help and guidance for those who are trying to make a new name for agriculture by using and making sustainable agricultural goods.
2010 Indiana CAFO Watch Conference
Saturday, July 17
Unitarian Universalist Church in Muncie, Ind.
4800 W. Bradford Dr.
Cost: $10 (includes a CAFO meat-free lunch)
Registration: 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.
Conference: 9:30 to 3:00 p.m.
Informal Networking- 3:00 to 4:00 p.m.
Rick Dove: "Crimes Against Nature"
Terry Spence: "Integrity Of Our Food Supply"
Lynn Henning: "Visit to Oval Office, and meeting with EPA Director, Lisa Jackson"
Jillian Parry Fry: "Environmental Public Health Implications of Industrial Food Animal Production"
To register or for more info contact Barbara Sha Cox at (765) 962-2184 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.