Are the CAFOs winning or losing? The jury is still out on this question.

Although litigation is the most expensive way to fight the incursion of factory farms, many communities are opting to go that route, neighbors figuring that if they are facing a major reduction in property values, they might as well spend to change the plans of Big Pig (or Big Cow, Big Poultry, Big Dairy, etc.).

CAFOZONE was not able to locate an inclusive list of law precedents, but there are articles galore on the internet about cases that are in process or have been settled. Big Ag fights back by changing laws. In Missouri, for example, Big Ag was able to get a bill passed to change the Clean Water Commission, the group supposedly committed to protecting the EPA’s Clean Water Act. After the CWC denied permits to a couple of CAFOs, lawmakers changed the nature of the CWC. Before their changes the CWC included citizens with an interest in protecting MIssouri’s water. After the change, old members were removed so that the CWC now includes mostly puppets of Big Ag.

There are lawsuits going on in several states, including a challenge to MIssouri’s CWC makeup. Here are links to some of the most recent lawsuits:

Date YYYY-MM-DDArticle
2019-11-01Almost as soon as the ink was dry on the Missouri governor's signature validating Senate Bill 391, protests from family farm advocates began. SB 391 would forbid counties from passing health ordinances to protect citizen health threatened by CAFOs too close to schools, churches and homes. Now a lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of 391 is in the courts. Commodity groups challenged the suit but have been dismissed. So, it's the family farmers against the state.
2019-09-12CAFOZONE has watched the situation in Iowa ever since we met the late, great William Stowe, C.E.O. of Des Moines Water Works during his fight for clean water for Iowans. Now a lawsuit to carry his mission forward has been cleared for hearing. We're proud of the ICCI, JFAN, Food and Water Watch, Public Justice and all their supporters for hanging in there!
2019-07-18Tyson chicken products boast that they're produced in an environmentally friendly manner, but according to Food and Water Watch, they dumped more than 20 million pounds of pollutants into streams in 2014, including anti-parasitic drugs, hazardous washing chemicals, formaldehyde (injected into eggs). Still, they get USDA funds for exports and upgrades on equipment. Food and Water Watch, along with Organic Consumers Union, is suing.
2019-04-15More States Are Restricting Who Can Sue Agriculture Operations - Six states (perhaps including yours) restrict lawsuits against concentrated animal feeding. If the CAFO wins, neighbors sometimes have to pay the law bills for both sides.
2019-01-03In an ongoing MIssouri case, the judge dismissed counts against several Cooper County Health Board members.
2018-12-07CAFOs suck up billions in government handouts while programs to help farmers transition to eco-friendly systems don't get squat. Finally, a coalition based in Indiana is challenging that system. Groups in several states have joined the suit and cafozone hopes that more will get motivated to help tame the CAFOs that have stolen markets from so many sustainable farmers.
2018-12-07Indiana nonprofit challenges federal loans given to CAFO operators - Government-guaranteed loans for CAFOs have always been on CAFOZONE’s short list of injustice to neighbors and independent family farmers. “Farming the government” helps the big guys grow, even though they never make a profit and leave their messes for others to deal with. This Indiana group challenges 130 loans in Indiana.
2018-12-05Challenging FSA's Medium-sized CAFO Exemptions. On December 5, 2018, a coalition of organizations, including the Animal Legal Defense Fund, filed a lawsuit challenging a 2016 regulation that exempts some CAFOs from nuisance laws.
2018-12-05Lawsuit challenges USDA's medium CAFO exemptions | Feedstuffs Somebody finally looks at the handouts our government gives to CAFOs. In this case, FSA performed environmental analyses under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to assess the impact of government loans or loan guarantees to medium-sized CAFOs that confine at least 350 dairy cows, 500 cattle, 1250 pigs, 27,500 turkeys and 50,000 chickens.
2018-08-09Large Jury Verdicts in Hog Nuisance Cases.
- A federal jury returned a $473.5 million verdict against the world's largest pork producer for nuisances.
2018-07-02How Litigation Has Become Rural America's Best Bet. How Litigation Has Become Rural America's Best Bet. Jul 2, 2018 - Believe CAFOZONE when we tell you that nobody wants to go to court to protect their property values, health and the environment. But, sometimes, a good lawyer is a community’s best friend.
2018-06-22Iowa Supreme Court upholds law shielding CAFOs. Meanwhile, in Iowa, the courts shield large animal feeding operations from lawsuits brought by neighbors who say they are no longer able to enjoy their property.
2018-04-02Litigation Against CAFOs an Increasing Trend | Dairy Business News - Big Dairy worries that challenges are on the rise and agriculture is losing ground.