Find out how factory farms affect all of us:

  • Farms & Communities

    Huge meat companies have steadily driven down the prices farmers receive for the livestock they raise, forcing farms to “get big or get out.” Small farms have been replaced by factory farms that pollute nearby air and water, undermine rural economies, and reduce the quality of life for neighbors.

    Protect Our Food: Act for a Fair Farm Bill
  • Consumers

    The meat industry tells consumers that factory farms are modern, efficient, and produce cheap food. But factory farms leave consumers with fewer choices and make them pay more for meat, poultry and dairy products, while farmers get paid less.

    Find out how to buy food that doesn’t come from factory farms
  • Food Safety

    Factory farms increase the risk of pathogens like E. coli and Salmonella that cause foodborne illness in people. And bad practices on even a few factory farms can end up on everyone’s plate.

    Stop the superbugs! End the overuse of antibiotics on factory farms
  • Health

    Foodborne illness isn’t the only health threat from factory farms. Overuse of antibiotics can fuel the growth of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, the use of arsenic and growth hormones can increase the risk of cancer in people, and crowded conditions can be a breeding ground for disease.

    Find out how to buy food that doesn’t come from factory farms
  • Animal Welfare

    Chickens and hogs on factory farms have no access to the outdoors, fresh air or natural light. Cattle on factory farms do not graze on pasture. And the pressure put on animals to grow quicker and produce more meat or milk results in frequent health problems.

Facts

United States

  • There are 4 factory-farmed chickens for every single American.
  • U.S. hog factory farms added 4,600 hogs every day between 1997 and 2007.
  • U.S. factory-farm dairies added nearly 650 cows every day between 1997 and 2007.
  • Between 1997 and 2007, U.S. factory farms added 5,800 broiler chickens every hour.
More United States facts

Alabama

  • There are 23 times more chickens than people in Alabama.
  • The 107.6 million broiler chickens, 165,000 hogs, 1.6 million egg-laying hens, and other livestock on factory farms in Alabama produce as much untreated manure as 40 million people -- nearly 9 times the population of Alabama.

Arizona

  • There are 48 times more chickens than people in Arkansas.
  • The average Arizona factory-farm dairy has nearly 2,700 cows.
  • The more than 93,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in Maricopa County, Arizona produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the New York City metro area.
  • The 180,500 dairy cows, 366,600 beef cattle, 614,000 egg-laying hens, and 5,100 hogs on factory farms in Arizona produce as much untreated manure as 77 million people -- 11 times the population of Arizona.

Arkansas

  • The Government Accountability Office reported that Benton and Washington counties in Arkansas produced 942 million pounds of manure in 2002.
  • The more than 16 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Benton County, Arkansas produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Atlanta metro area.
  • The more than 14 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Washington County, Arkansas produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Boston metro area.
  • The 133.8 million broiler chickens, 3.6 million egg-laying hens, 244,700 hogs, 3,800 beef cattle, and nearly 1,500 dairy cows on factory farms in Arkansas produce as much untreated manure as 51 million people -- nearly 18 times the population of Arkansas.
More Arkansas facts

California

  • The average industrial feedlot in California had more than 18,700 beef cattle.
  • The nearly 240,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in Merced County, California produce ten times more waste than the sewage from the Atlanta metro area.
  • The 155,000 dairy cows on factory-farmed dairies in Kings County, California produce twice as much untreated manure as the sewage from the New York City metro area.
  • The 399,000 beef cattle on industrial feedlots in Imperial County, California produce twice as much untreated manure as the sewage from the New York City metro area.
More California facts

Colorado

  • There is one factory farmed hog for every 5 people in Colorado.
  • There is one beef cattle on an industrial feedlot for every 5 people in Colorado.
  • The average Colorado hog factory farm has more than 30,800 hogs -- about six times larger than the national average.
  • The more than 181,000 beef cattle on industrial feedlots in Yuma County, Colorado produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Los Angeles and Atlanta metro areas combined.
More Colorado facts

Delaware

  • There are 19 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Delaware.
  • The more than 14 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Sussex County, Delaware produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Boston metro area.

Florida

  • The size of average Florida egg factory farms nearly tripled to 1.6 million hens between 1997 and 2007.
  • In 2009, the EPA issued an administrative order against a Sarasota County dairy for improperly disposing of dead cows above ground. The dairy had been sued in 2003 for disposing of manure without a permit.

Georgia

  • There are 22 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Georgia.
  • The more than 10.7 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Gilmer County, Georgia produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Seattle metro area.
  • The more than 17.5 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Franklin County, Georgia produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Philadelphia metro area.
  • The nearly 205 million broiler chickens, 9 million egg-laying hens, 235,000 hogs, and 35,000 dairy cows on factory farms in Georgia produce as much untreated manure as 85 million people -- nearly 9 times the population of Georgia.

Idaho

  • The average Idaho factory-farm dairy has more than 2,100 cows.
  • There is one factory farmed dairy cow for every three people in Idaho.
  • There is one beef cattle on an industrial feedlot for every 6 people in Idaho.
  • The more than 135,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in Gooding County, Idaho produce as much untreated manure as the sewage output from the New York City and Chicago metro areas combined.
More Idaho facts

Illinois

  • There is one factory farmed hog for every three people in Illinois.
  • The number of factory farmed hogs in Illinois grew by 22 percent to 3.9 million between 1997 and 2007.
  • The size of average Illinois egg factory farms nearly doubled to nearly 821,000 million hens between 1997 and 2007.
  • In 2009, an Iroquois County hog operation manure spill tainted 19-miles of a local stream, killing fish for several days, including the native northern pike.
More Illinois facts

Indiana

  • There are 6 times as many hogs on factory farms as people in Iowa.
  • There are only twice as many people as factory farmed hogs in Indiana.
  • The number of factory farmed hogs in Indiana grew by 18 percent to 3.3 million between 1997 and 2007.
  • The more than 6 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in Adams County, Indiana produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the San Diego metro area.
More Indiana facts

Iowa

  • There are 18 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Iowa.
  • The number of factory farmed hogs in Iowa grew 75 percent to 17.9 million between 1997 and 2007.
  • The size of average Iowa egg factory farms nearly tripled to nearly 1.3 million hens between 1997 and 2007.
  • In 2008, a leaky hose on a Blairstown, Iowa dairy allowed 5,000 gallons of manure to discharge to a local waterway.
More Iowa facts

Kansas

  • The average Kansas hog factory farm has 10,000 pigs.
  • The average Kansas factory-farm dairy has nearly 3,600 cows.
  • There are only twice as many people as factory farmed hogs in Kansas.
  • Kansas nearly has more beef cattle on industrial feedlots (2.6 million) than people (2.8 million).
More Kansas facts

Kentucky

  • There are 11 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Kentucky.
  • In 2003, a federal judge in Kentucky found that because Tyson Foods exercises so much control over its contract poultry growers, it too was responsible for the air pollution caused by these operations.

Louisiana

  • There are six times more chickens on factory farms than people in Louisiana.

Maine

  • In 2008, a 4-mile cow manure spill was left on a Maine state highway.

Maryland

  • There are six times more chickens on factory farms than people in Maryland.
  • Perdue’s poultry operations in the Chesapeake Bay produce so much more waste than the region can handle that the manure has to be trucked out of the state.
  • Livestock manure from the watersheds that feed the Chesapeake Bay are the source of about one-fourth of the pollution that causes oxygen-depleted dead zones in the Chesapeake.
  • In 2009, a 1,000-cow Frederick County, Maryland dairy operation reimbursed the county and a local city $254,900 for emergency water supplies, testing and other costs after a 576,000 gallon manure spill in 2008 polluted the town’s water supply, which had to be shut off for two months.
More Maryland facts

Michigan

  • The size of average Michigan egg factory farms nearly tripled to more than 875,000 hens between 1997 and 2007.
  • In 2009, as many as 200,000 fish were killed in a 12-mile length of the Black River in Sanilac County, Michigan after dairy manure was improperly spread on fields.
  • The more than 3.5 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in Allegan County, Michigan produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Austin, Texas metro area.
  • In 2007, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality sued the 6,600-head Ingham County Vreba-Hoff Dairy for failing to comply with state water quality laws and violating a 2005 consent judgment.
More Michigan facts

Minnesota

  • There are 40% more factory farmed hogs (7.1 million) than people (5.3 million) in Minnesota.
  • The number of factory farmed hogs in Minnesota grew 70 percent to 7.1 million between 1997 and 2002.
  • The more than 679,000 hogs on factory farms in McLeod County, Minnesota produce twice as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Houston metro area.
  • The 7 million hogs, nearly 290,000 beef cattle, 91,000 dairy cows, 9 million egg-laying hens, and 3 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Minnesota produce as much untreated manure as 179 million people -- more than half the U.S. population.

Mississippi

  • There are 38 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Mississippi.
  • The 110 million broiler chickens, 1.8 million egg-laying hens, 326,600 hogs and 3,500 dairy cows on factory farms in Mississippi produce as much untreated manure as 44 million people -- 15 times the population of Mississippi.

Missouri

  • There are only twice as many people as factory farmed hogs in Missouri.
  • There are 8 times more chickens on factory farms than people in Missouri.
  • The size of average Missouri egg factory farms doubled to nearly 1.4 million hens between 1997 and 2007.
  • Premium Standard Farms industrial hog facilities were three of the top five sources of odor complaints in Missouri between 2002 and 2006.
More Missouri facts

Nebraska

  • There are 40% more cattle on feedlots (2.5 million) than people (1.8 million) in Nebraska.
  • There are 60% more factory farmed hogs (2.9 million) than people (1.8 million) in Nebraska.
  • The nearly 254,000 beef cattle on industrial feedlots in Cuming County, Nebraska produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the New York City and Miami metro areas combined.
  • The more than 2.5 million beef cattle, 2.8 million hogs, 10 million egg-laying hens, nearly 26,700 dairy cows, and 168,000 broiler chickens on factory farms in Nebraska produce as much untreated manure as 313 million people -- more than the entire U.S. population.

New Mexico

  • The average New Mexico factory-farm dairy has nearly 2,400 cows.
  • There is one factory farmed dairy cow for every six people in New Mexico.
  • Along Interstate 10 southeast of Las Cruces, New Mexico, there are 30,000 dairy cows on 11 back-to-back dairies.
  • The 85,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in Chaves County, New Mexico produce as much untreated manure as the sewage output from the Los Angeles and Philadelphia metro areas combined.
More New Mexico facts

New York

  • The nearly 213,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in New York produce as much untreated manure as 47 million people -- two and a half times the population of New York.
  • In 2009, a dairy manure spill in upstate New York spilled into a tributary of the St. Lawrence River. Workers at a 6,000-head dairy spread manure to frozen fields, which pooled and leaked into the river.

North Carolina

  • There are nine times more chickens on factory farms than people in North Carolina.
  • There are more factory farmed hogs (10.1 million) than people (9.4 million) in North Carolina.
  • The more than 2.2 million hogs on factory farms in Duplin County, North Carolina produce twice as much untreated manure as the sewage from the New York City metro area.
  • The nearly 812,000 hogs on factory farms in Bladen County, North Carolina produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Chicago and Atlanta metro areas combined.
More North Carolina facts

North Dakota

  • There is one factory farmed hog for every four people in North Dakota.

Ohio

  • In 2009, a Fulton County dairy manure sprayer became stuck, dispersing manure that entered the Little Bear Creek.
  • In 2009, a line break on a Miami County hog farm spilled manure and affected 4.5 miles of the Canyon Run Creek and Stillwater River, killing 3,000 fish.
  • In 2008, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources investigated a manure spill that contaminated 2 miles of a tributary of the Middle Creek and caused a fish kill.
  • The nearly 4.5 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in Darke County, Ohio produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the entire Cincinnati metro area.
More Ohio facts

Oklahoma

  • The average Oklahoma hog factory farm has 24,800 pigs.
  • The average Oklahoma factory-farm dairy has more than 2,400 cows.
  • The average industrial feedlot in Oklahoma has nearly 13,300 beef cattle.
  • There are seven times more chickens on factory farms than people in Oklahoma.
More Oklahoma facts

Oregon

  • In 2009, an Oregon feedlot agreed to pay an $8,000 penalty to settle discharge violations for allowing manure to flow into a Snake River tributary.
  • Threemile Canyon Farms in Boardman, Oregon, is the largest dairy operation in the state with tens of thousands cows, which release more than 15,000 pounds of ammonia into the air every single day.

Pennsylvania

  • The more than 3.7 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Columbus, Ohio metro area.
  • The nearly 1 million hogs, 54,600 dairy cows, 25 million chickens and 35,000 beef cattle produce as much untreated manure as 43 million people -- three and a half times the population of Pennsylvania.
  • In 2010, Fulton County dairy operators agreed to pay a $12,920 fine and shut down their farm after tens of thousands of gallons of manure spilled into a tributary of the Licking Creek and Potomac River and killed 650 fish.

South Carolina

  • There are 8 times more chickens on factory farms than people in South Carolina.

South Dakota

  • There are nearly two factory farmed hogs for every person in South Dakota.
  • There is one beef cattle on an industrial feedlot for every 2 people in South Dakota.
  • The 342,000 beef cattle, 1.4 million hogs, 45,000 dairy cows, and 2.8 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in South Dakota produce as much untreated manure as 69 million people -- 85 times the population of South Dakota.

Texas

  • The average Texas hog factory farm has 100,000 hogs.
  • The average industrial feedlot in Texas has more than 20,500 beef cattle.
  • The nearly 14 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Nacogdoches County, Texas produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Detroit metro area.
  • The more than 20 million broiler chickens on factory farms in Shelby County, Texas produce as much untreated manure as the sewage from the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area.
More Texas facts

Utah

  • The average Utah hog factory farm has nearly 40,000 pigs.
  • There is one factory farmed hog for every four people in Utah.

Vermont

  • In 2008, the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources fined two northwestern Vermont farmers for excessive manure spreading on local field that ran off into Lake Champlain.

Virginia

  • In 2010, the EPA ordered a dairy and turkey farm from discharging nitrogen and phosphorus laden manure into a tributary of the Shenandoah River.
  • In 2010, the EPA ordered a 100,000 broiler chicken operation to stop discharging pollutants from large piles of uncovered chicken manure that were leaching nitrogen and phosphorus into a tributary of the Shenandoah River.
  • In 2010, the EPA ordered a 100,000 broiler chicken operation in Virginia to stop discharging pollutants from large piles of uncovered chicken manure that were leaching nitrogen and phosphorus into a tributary of the Shenandoah River.

Washington

  • The average industrial feedlot in Washington has more than 12,100 beef cattle.
  • In 2010, a manure lagoon on a 750-cow dairy collapsed, spilling 12 million gallons of manure onto fields that leaked into the Snohimish River.
  • The 86,000 dairy cows on factory-farm dairies in Yakima County, Washington produce as much untreated manure as the sewage output from the New York City metro area.
  • In 2008, a Mt. Vernon, Washington dairy agreed to pay an $8,000 penalty to settle alleged Clean Water Act violations for manure discharges that leaked from a barn into a tributary that leads to the Puget Sound.
More Washington facts

West Virginia

  • There are six times more chickens on factory farms than people in West Virginia.

Wisconsin

  • In 2008, a 600-heifer Rockland, Wisconsin farm was ordered to pay $28,000 for a manure discharge that killed 225 trout in a nearby creek and many more fish as far as 9 miles downstream.
  • Some Wisconsin mega-dairies have operated without necessary permits and many never receive an onsite inspection -- the state's goal is to visit once every 5 years but admits it does not meet that goal.
  • Between 2003 and the end of 2010, Wisconsin will have permitted 200 mega-dairies to open or expand but has never turned down a permit application or revoked a permit, even after repeated environmental violations.
  • The 257,000 dairy cows, nearly 270,000 hogs, 40,000 beef cattle, 4.9 million broiler chickens, and 3.6 million egg-laying hens on factory farms in Wisconsin produce as much untreated manure as 69 million people -- 12 times the population of Wisconsin.
More Wisconsin facts

Wyoming

  • The average Wyoming hog factory farm has nearly 34,000 pigs.

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