Benefits and Risks of Factory Farms. What we need to think about . What are the Benefits of Factory Farms?. Cheap Food The quantities of food produced have increased dramatically Examples: 1920 – 1980 Corn production has increased by 333%
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Benefits and Risks of Factory Farms What we need to think about
What are the Benefits of Factory Farms? • Cheap Food • The quantities of food produced have increased dramatically • Examples: • 1920 – 1980 Corn production has increased by 333% • 1950-2000 # of cows has decreased by 58% but milk production has increased by 343% • These increases keep the price of food low
What are the Benefits of Factory Farms? • Food Surpluses • U.S. Agriculture has become very efficient • We produce enough food to feed our population • We are able to export large amounts of food to other countries • Add Labor to The Workforce • By reducing the #’s of employees needed to run farms, it has provided surplus employees for other jobs, like manufacturing or business.
Risks of Factory Farms • Environmental Costs • Water Pollution (from waste pit run-off) • Contaminations to ground water and surface water
Risks of Factory Farms • Air Pollution (large amounts of ammonia are released into atmosphere) • Increases in flu-like symptoms and asthma related attacks in communities near Factory Farms
Risks of Factory Farms • Health Costs (we’ll talk more about this next week) • Increased number of pests and disease from the animal waste. • Giardia, E. Coli, Salmonella etc. • The nutritional quality of the food we eat depends on the time and energy we put into it • Beef Cattle Raised on Factory Farms • Significantly less Omega-3 Fatty Acids • Higher Cholesterol Higher Saturated Fats
Statement from the Center for Disease Control • According to the CDC’s report entitled: Understanding CAFO’s and their impact on the communitypg 16 • “CAFO’s or large industrial animal farms can cause a myriad of environmental and public health problems. While they can be maintained and operated properly, it is important to ensure that they are routinely monitored to avoid harm to the surrounding community.”
Exit Slip • In your opinion do the benefits of Factory Farms outweigh the costs? • Why?