Anna was thrilled to be a keynote speaker at the 2020 50×40 Global Summit—the global network committed to reducing industrial animal agriculture 50 percent by 2040. Anna talked about the incredible toll of factor farming, from squandering land and other natural resources to huge greenhouse gas emissions and the exploitation of workers and abuse of animals. She shared the staggering rates of meatpacking workers contracting Covid-19, with over 50,000 workers infected as of January 20, 2021.
We believe this conflux of crises offers us the opportunity to upend the global industrial meat model, but as Anna mentioned in her talk, only if we make it so:
“The pandemic is an opportunity only if we make it one… When it comes to fighting for a more moral food system—one that protects workers and farmers alike, one that is humane to all the world’s creatures—we must act now and act boldly.”
How do we do that? We do it together.
Here are four ways to harness our collective power:
- Be bold. Our role as organizers and advocates is to show what is possible—the policies will follow.
- Be confident in communicating complexity. Silver bullet solutions won’t do the job here. We have to get to the root causes to create real, radical change.
- Think globally. Focusing attention on our individual locales only creates the opportunity for agribusiness to move the problem elsewhere.
- Celebrate our very big tent. Issues such as the industrial meat model touch on so much that people care about. As we develop strategies, communications, and policy asks, this big tent can be our biggest asset, but only if we consciously nurture these connections.
Watch the full speech here and make sure to check out out some additional resources:
- Food Mythbusters video: Do We Need Industrial Agriculture to Feed the World?
- Real Food Reads podcast episode 44, Bite Back: People Taking On Corporate Food and Winning featuring Jose Oliva
- Foodtopias podcast episode 1, Laboring in a Pandemic, featuring Christina Spach and Axel Fuentes
- Tackling Climate Change Through Food, an organizing toolkit