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Harrisonburg, VA – The Humane Society of the United States will join with Virginia and West Virginia farmers to announce the formation of the Agricultural Advisory Council of the Virginias this evening at a gathering in Harrisonburg, VA. Participants will include farmers who embrace more humane and sustainable farming production methods and actively promote the American diversified family farm as a better alternative and path forward for food production than industrial animal agriculture.  The Council will serve and support independent family farmers in the two states who reject the factory farm model and who have been the lifeblood of our rural communities. The council will be the fifteenth such group formed by the Humane Society of the United States, joining states such as Alabama, North Carolina, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Missouri.

“The Humane Society of the United States is proud to include these farmers of Virginia and West Virginia into the HSUS family, and we welcome their help in the fight against the industrial production model that hurts both people and animals,” said Scott Beckstead, Rural Affairs Director at The HSUS. “They know full well the damage being done by policies that solely promote Big Ag and the spread of industrial animal CAFOs. It’s manifested in the decimated small towns, the polluted waters and streams, and the small family farms being squeezed to the breaking point.”

“Virginia and West Virginia both have a long, proud family farming tradition that should be preserved and supported,” said Mike Weaver, president of the Contract Poultry Growers Association of the Virginias. “We are proud to join with the Humane Society of the United States in its support of more humane and responsible stewardship of our animals and the land we raise them on.”

The Humane Society of the United States partners with farmers who share our passion for high standards of animal welfare—for the sake of animals, family farmers, the land, and local communities. It collaborates with farmers and ranchers who provide advice and guidance on policies that will result in better, more humane care for animals on the farm. The agriculture advisory councils provide family farmers with an amplified voice to resist policies and programs that promote the industrial animal agriculture model, such as the federal checkoff programs and state laws to shield factory farms from transparency and oversight. 

Media Contact: Scott Beckstead, 541-530-8509; sbeckstead@humanesociety.org

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Article source: HSUS

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