United States: Tell the Small Business Administration Not to Fund Bigger Factory Farms
This action is CLOSED.
The animal agriculture industry attempts to paint itself as a collection of small family farms, but nothing could be further from the truth. Large — often multinational — corporations have overtaken animal agriculture in the United States. There is nothing small about this cruel and destructive industry, yet the Small Business Administration (SBA) is proposing a rule that will allow it to give small business loans to even larger factory farms.
Unfortunately, the SBA has a history of enabling the animal agriculture industry’s exploitation of funds. In 2018, the SBA Office of the Inspector General released a report concluding that the SBA guaranteed approximately $1.8 billion in loans to factory farms that did not actually qualify as small businesses. The Animal Legal Defense Fund has urged the SBA not to fund the corporate animal agriculture industry and is currently suing over the federal government’s decision to exempt federal funding for factory farms from environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act.
The SBA was created in 1953 “to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation.” Funding the corporate owners of the animal agriculture industry with loans intended to help small businesses betrays the SBA’s mission. This industry is neither small nor competitive—it is controlled by a handful of large, highly consolidated corporations that are destroying actual small business and siphoning wealth from rural communities.
Factory farms intensively confine thousands, and even millions, of animals until they grow large enough to be trucked to slaughter. Not only do they hurt animals, factory farms threaten public health by spreading antibiotic resistant bacteria and zoonotic diseases and pollute the air and water. These environmental effects are especially harmful in marginalized communities, where factory farms are disproportionately sited.
The SBA should not be using public money to further entrench this industry at the expense of animals, the environment, and rural communities. We need your help in asking the SBA to reconsider its proposal to expand federal funding of factory farms.
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