In the Mail: Animal Factory

Animal Factory: The Looming Threat of Industrial Pig, Dairy, and Poultry Farms to Humans and the Environment

Library Journal

Kirby (Evidence of Harm) turns his investigative reporting skills to the human and environmental consequences of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). The first section details how three concerned citizens—a North Carolina fisherman, a mother in a small Illinois town, and a Washington State grandmother—became activists after seeing firsthand how CAFOs negatively altered the environment around them. The second section frames the public health and ecological issues surrounding CAFOs by looking at how they have been treated nationally. VERDICT Unlike recent books on this topic that advocate for a vegetarian lifestyle (e.g., Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals or Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson’s The Face on Your Plate), Kirby focuses on the negative impacts CAFOs are having on not only those who live near these operations but also those who may be affected by polluted water originating from waste lagoon spills at these sites. His narrative is immensely readable and should be required reading for anybody concerned with how CAFOs are changing the nature of livestock farming in the United States.

Kevin Holtsberry
I work in communications and public affairs. I try to squeeze in as much reading as I can while still spending time with my wife and two kids (and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers and Michigan Wolverines during football season).

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