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Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production

the issues


Public HealthImpact on Rural CommunitiesEnvironmentAnimal Health & Well-being










A selection of websites that provide information about issues that concern PCIFAP. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the Commission.


United States Department of Agriculture click hereClick Here

"We provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management."

Selected USDA links:

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service click hereClick Here

(see also) Veterinary Services click hereClick Here

Natural Resources Conservation Service click hereClick Here

National Agricultural Library click hereClick Here

Food Safety and Inspection Service click hereClick Here

U.S. Food and Drug Administration click hereClick Here

"The FDA is responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation. The FDA is also responsible for advancing the public health by helping to speed innovations that make medicines and foods more effective, safer, and more affordable; and helping the public get the accurate, science-based information they need to use medicines and foods to improve their health."

Selected FDA links:

Center for Veterinary Medicine click hereClick Here

(see also) National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) click hereClick Here

Antibiotic Resistance background click hereClick Here

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention click hereClick Here

"The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the 13 major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which is the principal agency in the United States government for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services, especially for those people who are least able to help themselves."

Selected CDC links:

Food Safety Office click hereClick Here 

National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) click hereClick Here

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency click hereClick Here

"The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency is to protect human health and the environment. Since 1970, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people."

Selected EPA links:

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) - Animal Feeding Operations (AFO) overviewclick hereClick Here

(see also) NPDES important AFO/CAFO links click hereClick Here

U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture click hereclick here

"The responsibilities and goals of the House Committee on Agriculture are as diverse as the needs of American agriculture. We face issues as varied as renewable energy, rural development, disaster assistance, nutrition, crop insurance, conservation, international trade, futures market regulation, animal and plant health, agricultural research and development, bioterrorism, forestry and many others.
Our challenge is to find ways to address the diverse needs of agriculture in regions with very different products, climates and experiences. We must continue to work together to find ways to not only support our nation’s agricultural production but also to ensure that American consumers continue to have access to the world’s safest, most abundant food and agriculture products."

U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee click hereClick Here 

According to a 1999 document, Committee jurisdiction includes: agricultural economics and research; extension services and experiment stations; production marketing and stabilization of prices, agriculture and agricultural commodities; animal industry and diseases; crop insurance and soil conservation; farm credit and farm security; food from fresh waters; food stamp programs; forestry, and forest reserves and wilderness areas other than those created from the public domain; home economics; human nutrition, inspection of livestock, meat and agricultural products, pests and pesticides, plant industry, soils and agricultural engineering, rural development, rural electrification and watersheds; and school nutrition programs.

U.S. Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works click hereclick here

"The air we breathe, the water we drink, and the products we consume have a direct impact on the health of our families.  The work of this Committee helps define the kind of world we leave our children and grandchildren.

In addition to ensuring our families have safe and healthy communities to live in, the Environment and Public Works Committee’s jurisdiction includes responsibility for addressing global warming, one of the greatest environmental challenges facing our nation today.

The Committee also has responsibility for legislation related to America’s critical transportation systems, flood protection, drinking water and wastewater systems, and the other public infrastructure that provides the foundation for our quality of life and keeps our nation’s economy moving."

Senator Barbara Boxer, Chairman

U.S Senate Committe on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions click hereclick here

Committee Jurisdiction - Rule 25, of the Standing Rules of the Senate, States the Committee's Jurisdiction to be the following:

Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, to which committee shall be referred all proposed legislation, messages, petitions, memorials, and other matters relating to the following subjects:

1. Measures relating to education, labor, health, and public welfare.
3. Agricultural colleges.
4. Arts and humanities.
5. Biomedical research and development.
6. Child labor.
7. Convict labor and the entry of goods made by convicts into interstate commerce.
8. Domestic activities of the American National Red Cross.
9. Equal employment opportunity.
10. Gallaudet University, Howard University, and Saint Elizabeth hospital.
11. Individuals with disabilities.
12. Labor standards and labor statistics.
13. Mediation and arbitration of labor disputes.
14. Occupational safety and health, including the welfare of miners.
15. Private pension plans.
16. Public health.
17. Railway labor and retirement.
18. Regulation of foreign laborers.
19. Student loans.
20. Wages and hours of labor.

Such committee shall also study and review, on a comprehensive basis, matters relating to health, education and training, and public welfare, and report thereon from time to time.

U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce click hereclick here

"The Committee on Energy and Commerce is the oldest standing committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, and one of its most important committees. Throughout its history, the Committee on Energy and Commerce has written landmark legislation greatly benefiting the American people: laws to improve the quality of the air we breathe, to clean up toxic waste sites, to provide health care to senior citizens and children, to protect the safety of our food and drugs, to promote a vibrant telecommunications industry, to prevent fraud in our financial markets, and much more."

Representative John D. Dingell, Chairman


American Egg Board click hereClick here

"The American Egg Board (AEB) is the U.S. egg producer's link to the consumer in communicating the value of the incredible egg. As the egg industry's promotion arm, AEB's foremost challenge is to convince the American public that the egg is still one of nature's most nearly perfect foods. AEB's basic task is to improve the demand for shell eggs, egg products, as well as spent fowl throughout the United States."

American Feed Industry Association click hereClick Here

"AFIA is the only national organization devoted exclusively to providing strong, highly qualified leadership representing the business, legislative and regulatory interests of the animal feed and pet food industries and their suppliers."

Animal Health Institute click hereClick Here

"This web site is provided by the Animal Health Institute, which represents manufacturers of animal health care products used to produce a safe supply of meat, milk, poultry and eggs, and the veterinary medicines that help pets live longer, healthier lives.’

American Meat Institute click hereClick Here

"AMI is the national trade association representing companies that process 70 percent of U.S. meat and poultry and their suppliers throughout America."

Cattleman's Beef Board click hereclick here

"The Cattlemen's Beef Promotion And Research Board, usually referred to as the Cattlemen's Beef Board or CBB, consists of 104 members, including domestic beef, dairy and veal producers, as well as importers of beef and beef products."

Community Alliance for Responsible Environmental Stewardship (CARES) click hereClick here

"California dairy farmers, milk processors and support industries have a longstanding commitment to their local communities. Recognizing that a healthy future for the dairy industry requires a dynamic alliance between local residents, dairy business operators and community leaders, CARES was formed to promote economic and environmental sustainability as the dairy industry continues to grow and create jobs"

Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc. click hereClick Here

"DPI is the nonprofit trade association working for the continued progress of the broiler chicken industry in Delaware, the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and the Eastern Shore of Virginia. In existence since 1948, DPI's members include nearly 1,400 farm families raising chickens, four poultry companies producing birds on Delmarva, more than one thousand poultry company employees, hundreds of allied industry suppliers of products and services, and hundreds of Delmarva-based, non-poultry businesses that recognize the important work DPI does to keep the local poultry industry strong."

Dairy Management, Inc. (DMI) click hereclick here

"DMI helps build demand for dairy on behalf of dairy producers and is dedicated to the success of the  dairy industry" 

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association click hereClick Here

"The National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) is the national trade association representing US cattle producers, with more than 25,000 individual members and sixty-four state affiliate, breed and industry organization members. Together NCBA represents more than 230,000 cattle breeders, producers and feeders. NCBA works to advance the economic, political and social interests of the US cattle business and to be an advocate for the cattle industry's policy positions and economic interests."

National Chicken Council click hereClick Here

"The National Chicken Council (NCC), based in Washington, D.C., is the national, non-profit trade association representing the U.S. chicken industry. NCC is a full-service trade association that promotes and protects the interests of the chicken industry and is the industry’s voice before Congress and federal agencies. NCC member companies include chicken producer/processors, poultry distributors, and allied industry firms. The producer/processors account for approximately 95 percent of the chickens produced in the United States."

National Pork Producers Council click hereClick Here

"The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) conducts public policy outreach on behalf of its 44 affiliated state association members - enhancing opportunities for the success of U.S. pork producers and other industry stakeholders by establishing the U.S. pork industry as a consistent and responsible supplier of high quality pork to the domestic and world market."

National Pork Board click hereclick here

"The National Pork Board, proud to be a producer-driven organization, serves as a facilitator of that change through strong collaborative relationships between pork producers, staff, education/Extension and business."

U.S. Poultry and Egg Association click hereClick Here

"The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association is the world's largest and most active poultry organization. We represent the entire industry as an "All Feather" association. Membership includes producers and processors of broilers, turkeys, ducks, eggs, and breeding stock, as well as allied companies. Formed in 1947, the association has affiliations in 26 states and member companies worldwide."


American Farm Bureau Federation click hereClick Here

"Farm Bureau is an independent, non-governmental, voluntary organization governed by and representing farm and ranch families united for the purpose of analyzing their problems and formulating action to achieve educational improvement, economic opportunity and social advancement and, thereby, to promote the national well-being. Farm Bureau is local, county, state, national and international in its scope and influence and is non-partisan, non-sectarian and non-secret in character. Farm Bureau is the voice of agricultural producers at all levels."

Farm Foundation click hereclick here

"Farm Foundation is a publicly supported nonprofit organization working to improve the economic health and social well-being of U.S. agriculture, the food system and rural people by helping private and public sector decision makers identify and understand forces that will shape the future."

National Black Farmers Association (NBFA) click hereClick Here

"NBFA is a community-based organization with a national presence of more than 66,000 members. The NBFA has been involved in advocacy, land retention, and rural development for black and other small farmers throughout the country since 1995. The organizations mission is to eliminate and reverse the causes of land loss by limited resources and socially/economically disadvantaged farmers while creating opportunities for small farmers to participate in the mainstream economy."

National Family Farm Coalition (NFFC) click hereClick Here

"The National Family Farm Coalition (NFFC) provides a voice for grassroots groups on farm, food, trade and rural economic issues to ensure fair prices for family farmers, safe and healthy food, and vibrant, environmentally sound rural communities here and around the world."

National Farmer’s Organization click hereClick Here

"National Farmers, a non-profit organization, began in 1955, as a way for producers to communicate agricultural and rural concerns to congressional and local leaders."

National Farmers Union click hereClick Here

"National Farmers Union, officially called the Farmers Educational and Cooperative Union of America, was founded in 1902 in Point, Texas by Newt Gresham. National Farmers Union is a general farm organization with a membership of nearly 250,000 farm and ranch families throughout the United States. National Farmers Union is a federation that represents farmers and ranchers in all states."

R-CALF United Stockgrowers of America click hereClick Here

"R-CALF USA, the Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund, United Stockgrowers of America, represents thousands of U.S. cattle producers on domestic and international trade and marketing issues. R-CALF USA, a national, non-profit organization, is dedicated to ensuring the continued profitability and viability of the U.S. cattle industry. R-CALF USA’s membership consists primarily of cow-calf operators, cattle backgrounders, and feedlot owners. Its members – over 18,000 strong -- are located in 47 states, and the organization has over 60 local and state association affiliates, from both cattle and farm organizations."


United Food and Commercial Workers click hereClick Here

With 1.4 million members, the UFCW works in a wide range of industries, including health care, meatpacking, poultry and food processing, manufacturing, distillery, winery, textile and chemical trades, and retail food. See their page about meatpacking and poultry processing:


Alliance for the Prudent Use of Antibiotics (Tufts University) click hereClick Here

"Founded as a non-profit global organization in 1981, APUA’s mission is to strengthen society’s defenses against infectious disease by promoting appropriate antimicrobial access and use and controlling antimicrobial resistance on a worldwide basis. With affiliated chapters in over 50 countries, APUA stands as the world’s leading global organization conducting applied antimicrobial resistance research, education, capacity building and advocacy at the global and grassroots levels."

Center for Agriculture & Food Security & Preparedness (Univ. of Tenn. College of Veterinary Medicine) click hereClick here

"The College [UTCVM] is committed to assisting the nation to protect its critical infrastructure, including agriculture and the food supply."

Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (Univ. of California - Santa Cruz) click hereClick Here

"The Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems is a research, education, and public service program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, dedicated to increasing ecological sustainability and social justice in the food and agriculture system."

Center for Animals and Public Policy (Tufts University - Cummings Veterinary School) click hereClick Here

"The mission of the Center, founded in 1983, is to support and encourage scholarly evaluation and understanding of the complex societal issues and public policy dimensions of the changing role of animals in society."

Center for Animal Health and Food Safety (University of Minnesota - College of Veterinary Medicine) click hereClick Here

"The mission of the University of Minnesota Center for Animal Health and Food Safety is to contribute to the safety and security of the global food system and significantly strengthen our ability to anticipate and respond to emerging issues and imminent threats from animal and food borne illnesses."

Center for Environmental and Rural Health (Texas A&M University) click hereClick Here

"The mission of the Center for Environmental and Rural Health is to foster and promote basic and applied science programs focusing on the impact of environmental factors on human health, particularly as it relates to rural communities."

Center for Food Animal Health (University of California – Davis School of Veterinary Medicine) click hereClick Here

"To create, apply and disseminate new knowledge that will enhance the current and future health and well-being of food-producing animals, promote the safety of foods of animal origin, and provide a healthy environment for food animals and humans."

Center for the Interaction of Animals and Society (University of Pennsylvania -School of Veterinary Medicine) click hereClick Here

"The broad goal of the CIAS is to promote understanding of human-animal interactions and relationships across a wide range of contexts including companion animals, farm animals, laboratory animals, zoo animals, and free-living wild animals."

Center for a Livable Future (Johns Hopkins University) click hereClick Here

"To promote research and to develop and communicate information about the complex interrelationships among diet, food production, environment and human health; to advance an ecological perspective in reducing threats to the health of the public; and to promote policies that protect health, the global environment and the ability to sustain life for future generations."

Department of Animal Sciences (Colorado State University) click hereClick here

Provides students "with an industry-oriented, science-based education that prepares them for careers in animal agriculture or one of the many industries associated with livestock production."

Dr. Temple Grandin’s web page: click hereClick Here

Environmental Health Sciences Research Center (University of Iowa) click hereClick Here

Mission is "to continually advance knowledge and awareness of environmental health science that improves quality of life among rural and agricultural populations."

Food Animal Production Medicine Section (University of Wisconsin - School of Veterinary Medicine) click hereClick Here

"Our teaching mission is to broaden the education of the veterinary students interested in pursuing food animal practice, particularly dairy, so that they can identify and solve herd health management problems."

Iowa Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (University of Iowa – College of Public Health) click hereClick Here

"The mission of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH) is to enhance the health and safety of Iowa’s agricultural community by establishing and coordinating prevention and education programs. I-CASH is headquartered in the University of Iowa, College of Public Health in Iowa City, IA. It is a joint venture of The University of Iowa, Iowa State University, Iowa Department of Public Health, and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship."

Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture (Iowa State University) click hereClick Here

"Explores and cultivates alternatives that secure healthier people and landscapes in Iowa and the nation."

National Food Safety and Toxicology Center (Michigan State University) click hereClick Here

"The National Food Safety & Toxicology Center is committed to reducing food-related disease on a global level, through research, education and service."

Western Institute for Food Safety and Security (University of California – Davis) click hereClick Here

"The mission of the Institute is to conduct research that will enhance food safety in all sectors of the food systems' continuum from environment to consumer."


Animal Agriculture Alliance click hereClick Here

"The Animal Agriculture Alliance is a positive and informed voice communicating reliable, science-based information on key agricultural topics ranging from animal welfare to biotechnology to environmental impacts."

Center for Rural Affairs click hereClick Here

"Our mission is to establish strong rural communities, social and economic justice, environmental stewardship, and genuine opportunity for all while engaging people in decisions that affect the quality of their lives and the future of their communities."

Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) click hereclick here

"The primary work of CAST is the publication of task force reports, commentary papers and issue papers written by scientists from many disciplines." "CAST addresses issues of animal sciences, food sciences and agricultural technology, plant and soil sciences, and plant protection sciences with inputs from economists, social scientists, toxicologists or plant pathologists and entomologists, weed scientists, nematologists, and legal experts."

Environmental Defense Fund click hereClick Here

"Environmental Defense is a leading national nonprofit organization representing more than 400,000 members. Since 1967, we have linked science, economics and law to create innovative, equitable and cost-effective solutions to society's most urgent environmental problems." See this page for their work on hog production in North Carolina.

Humane Society of the United States click hereClick Here

"The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has worked since 1954 to promote the protection of all animals. With nearly ten million members and constituents, The HSUS is the nation’s largest and most powerful animal protection organization, working in the United States and abroad to defend the interests of animals."

Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy click hereClick Here

"The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy promotes resilient family farms, rural communities and ecosystems around the world through research and education, science and technology, and advocacy."

Institute of Food Technologists click hereclick here

"Founded in 1939, the Institute of Food Technologists is a nonprofit scientific society with 22,000 members working in food science, food technology, and related professions in industry, academia and government"

Keep Antibiotics Working click hereClick Here

"The Campaign to End Antibiotic Overuse includes concerned health, consumer, agricultural, environmental, humane and other advocacy groups with more than nine million members, all working to reduce the growing public health threat of antibiotic resistance."

Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture click hereClick Here

"The Kerr Center believes that sustainable agriculture must be socially equitable, profitable for producers and ecologically sound. The Kerr Center values and supports the family farm structure of agriculture, a fair playing field for independent farmers and ranchers, public research for the public domain, the enhancement and protection of natural resources, respect for nature, local food systems and better communities."

National Catholic Rural Life Conference click hereClick Here

"Founded in 1923, the National Catholic Rural Life Conference has been a witness for hope in rural America for more than 80 years. Throughout these eight decades, the Rural Life Conference has lifted up and affirmed the rural way of life. Over the years, the Catholic Rural Life Conference has clearly stood in favor and support of rural people, family farms and local businesses that promote sustainable community development."

Union of Concerned Scientists click hereClick Here

"UCS is an independent nonprofit alliance of more than 100,000 concerned citizens and scientists. We augment rigorous scientific analysis with innovative thinking and committed citizen advocacy to build a cleaner, healthier environment and a safer world."


Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research click hereClick Here

"The purpose of the DFVF is to promote healthy and safe food for the consumers, to contribute to the prevention of food related diseases in humans, and to take part in the prevention and control of animal diseases as part of the veterinary contingency plan."

U.K. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)  click hereClick here

"Defra's core purpose is to improve the current and future quality of life. For the first time one department has brought together the interests of
farmers and the countryside; the environment and the rural economy; the food we eat, the air we breathe and the water we drink. We do all this by integrating environmental, social and economic objectives - putting sustainable development into practice every day, and by championing sustainable development as the way forward for Government." 

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) click hereClick Here

"Founded in 1945 serves both developed and developing countries as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate agreements and debate policy. FAO is also a source of knowledge and information helping developing countries and countries in transition modernize and improve agriculture, forestry and fisheries practices." This links to the home page of the Agriculture Department, Division of Animal Production and Health.

Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) click hereClick Here

"An international public health agency with 100 years of experience in working to improve health and living standards of the countries of the Americas. PAHO is now part of the United Nation’s system." The following page deals with relevant issues: Food safety in the Americas and
 Zoonoses/ Animal Health in the Americas click hereClick Here

World Bank Group click hereClick Here

"One of the world’s largest sources of development assistance, the World Bank supports the efforts of developing country governments to build schools and health centers, provide water and electricity, fight disease, and protect the environment. It is one of the United Nations’ specialized agencies, and is made up of 184 member countries. The rural strategy is one of several thematic and sector-specific strategies developed and implemented by the World Bank in partnership with their client countries. Agriculture and rural strategy development is a dynamic process, responding to changes and evolutions in the broader development arena on an ongoing basis."

World Health Organization (WHO) click hereClick Here

"Established in 1948, WHO is the United Nations specialized agency for health. WHO's objective, as set out in its Constitution, is the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health. Health is defined in WHO's Constitution as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." This page addresses zoonoses (disease/infections transmissible from animals to humans) and veterinary public health.

World Organization for Animal Health (OIE-Office International des Epizooties) click hereClick Here

"OIE was established in 1924 with the purpose of preventing and controlling animal diseases and zoonoses pandemics. Each of the 164 member countries provides data on local animal disease in an effort to warn each other of potential outbreaks."

Photographs Courtesy of USDA
Copyright © 2006 The Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production. All rights reserved.
The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health