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Challenges and Opportunities

Modern food production is under the public spotlight—and rightly so. Although the drive to maximize farm productivity over the last 50 years has resulted in an abundance of so-called “cheap” food—especially meat—we now know industrial agriculture takes a costly toll on our health, the environment, biodiversity, animal welfare, rural economies and farming families.

Millions of people are discovering that their food choices really do matter—and it looks like you’re one of them!

HEALTH AND NUTRITION

The U.S. livestock industry uses more antibiotics per pound of meat produced than any other nation—a whopping 32 million pounds in 2013 alone!

POLLUTION

Industrial livestock farms produce up to 1.37 billion tons of manure each year—20 times more fecal waste than the entire U.S. human population.

CLIMATE CHANGE

Industrial livestock operations are responsible for over 7% of U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions—and up to 14.5% of all global GHG emissions.

WATER

Recent research shows that factory farmed livestock consume and pollute more water resources than pasture-raised or grassfed systems.

ANIMAL WELFARE

Over 95% of the 303 million laying hens in the U.S. are raised in battery cages, each with less than the area of a sheet of letter paper to live.

FARMERS AND WORKERS

Most U.S. livestock farmers operate under ‘captive contracts’ and have very little choice or control over how they run their farming business.

SOIL

We’re losing over 1.7 billion tons of fertile soil every single year in the U.S. as a result of unsustainable farming and soil management practices.

MISLEADING LABELS

Food label claims like “all natural” or “humane” might sound positive, but mean nothing in terms of animal welfare or the environment.

Take Positive Action

At AGW, our goal is to provide you with simple, straightforward solutions so you can choose foods that count when you’re shopping or dining out. Each of our farm certification programs—Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW, Certified Grassfed by AGW, Certified Organic by AGW and Certified Non-GMO by AGW—are designed to have positive and measurable impacts that encourage truly sustainable farming practices.

Find out more about the challenges we all face by selecting one of the issues above—or find out how YOU can be part of the solution here!

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