Industrial agriculture standardizes every aspect of production. This model is far afield from any traditional form of agriculture.

North Carolina environmental justice groups have been organizing against factory hog farms ever since Smithfield moved into their backyards. Community cries for a healthy environment, with breathable air and drinkable water, often fall on deaf ears. But this time — after years of building power — the community won. A Fourth Circuit court ruled against Smithfield in a series of mass action lawsuits brought by mostly Black residents of Eastern North Carolina. It was a historic victory, for community organizers and legal advocates alike.

But after Smithfield’s loss, the corporation told the story a little differently. Smithfield wants people to…

Few industries rival the devastation of industrial animal agriculture. It is a major driver of climate change, the leading cause of surface water pollution, and the basis of antibiotic resistance and food-borne illness. Its cruelty to workers and animals is unmatched and its impacts are disproportionately felt by Black and brown communities and lower income areas. This industry needs a cure that goes beyond addressing its symptoms, one that gets at the underlying disease: unchecked corporate control of the food system.

I’ve been in this field long enough to learn that there’s no silver bullet to curing the destructive industry…

Jessica Culpepper

Food Project Director at @Public_Justice. Wife to @RevJustinMartin. Proud mom of 3 kids & 2 rescues. Fighting for a just food system. Tweets are my own.

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