The news reports get uglier, more divisive, more disheartening with each passing day.
Like you, I’m saddened. And worried.
Like you, we in the OCA office are finding it difficult to stay focused on our mission, to regenerate our food and farming system, our health, and our planet.
But you and I know we must forge ahead.
You’ve always supported our joint struggle for an organic and equitable food system. For a chemical-free environment. For corporate accountability. For peace, justice and sustainability.
Despite the turmoil that surrounds us—in fact, because of it—we are doubling down on our mission.
That mission requires us to strike at the heart of the absolute worst manifestation of our degenerative, exploitative, extractive industrial food and farming system—the $1-trillion factory farm industry.
Late yesterday, a New England donor, inspired by our campaign to force Ben & Jerry’s to go organic, made a generous offer.
The donor, who asked to remain anonymous, will match up to $25,000 in donations raised between now and midnight, Monday, August 21. That means your donation today will be worth twice as much. Can you pitch in today to help us take advantage of this matching gift offer? Details here.
We’re grateful for this surprise offer—and not just because we’re rapidly expending resources on this campaign. (We are, by the way).
We’re grateful because this generous offer validates our strategy: To erode Ben & Jerry’s brand so much that the company begins the long-overdue transition from Dirty Dairy to an organic regenerative system that respects and rewards farmers and farmworkers, doesn't abuse animals, no longer pollutes waterways or degrades soil, and produces a safer, organic consumer product.
Some of you have questioned our Ben & Jerry’s campaign. There are worse companies out there, why not go after them?
One, Ben & Jerry’s (owned by international giant Unilever) is a billion-dollar fraud. Consumers have the right to know that behind the phony “social responsibility” and “caring dairy” claims is a profit-maximization strategy that relies on the shameless exploitation of farmers, farmworkers and animals, and the massive use of pesticides like Roundup (which we found in Ben & Jerry’s ice cream) and atrazine, used to grow GMO crops to feed dairy cows.
Two, Ben & Jerry’s has enough buying power to exert a tremendous positive impact on the dairy industry—and by extension, on human, animal and environmental health. In other words, this company is perfectly capable of walking the walk, not just talking the talk. This campaign is winnable—if we keep the pressure on. And a win in Vermont is win for us all.
Ben & Jerry’s isn’t the only factory farm culprit we’re focused on right now. We recently exposed the long list of drugs, hormones and pesticides detected in Sanderson Farms’ so-called “100% Natural” chicken products, and the fact that Sanderson’s chicken finds its way, unlabeled and unidentified, into schools, hospitals and restaurants.
Our lawsuit against Sanderson Farms is working its way through the courts. We will not give up until everyone knows what’s in this chicken, and how false Sanderson’s statements are.
These two campaigns have been labor- and resource-intensive. They’ve required expensive testing, extensive media and consumer outreach, legal fees, and volunteer mobilization for the eight-city Ben & Jerry’s protests we organized last week, and the future protests we are planning.
But these strategic campaigns are a critical to our overall goal: end factory farming.
We will never stop working to reform food safety and agricultural policy. But in today’s political climate, controlled by an administration that brags about putting corporate profits first, and public health and the environment last, our best hope for ending factory farming lies in educating consumers, defeating corporations in the courts, and damaging brands like Ben & Jerry's and Sanderson Farms in the marketplace.
Factory farms are fueled by millions of acres of GMO crops, grown to feed chickens, pigs, beef cattle and dairy cows.
Bring down the factory farms, and the market for Monsanto’s GMO crops is drastically reduced.
Bring down the factory farms, and the massive pollution, the public health curse of antibiotic-resistance, the unspeakable animal cruelty, the contaminated food—it all goes away.
P.S. Please help us take advantage of this surprise $25,000 matching gift offer by making a generous donation today. Together, we can expose factory farms and force companies to transition to organic. You can donate online, by mail or by phone, details here.