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THE FARM BILL AND FACTORY FARMS Could the Farm Bill Be Encouraging CAFO Growth Near You Fa

The $1.4 trillion 2023 Farm Bill is now making its way through Congress. It’s a perfect time to learn more about how factory farms thrive under current government programs and how we can advocate for a fairer 2023 Farm Bill supporting small-scale farmers.

Farm Bill policy experts Joe Maxwell, President and Co-founder of Farm Action, and Aaron Lehman, President

of the Iowa Farmers Union, will explore how the Farm Bill benefits CAFOs and explain the negotiations currently underway to shift the balance of funding to benefit traditional, independent farms.  


Maxwell and Lehman will cover:

  • A brief overview of the Farm Bill and how it historically built support for CAFOs and industrial agriculture

  • Specific programs that boost and prop up CAFOs 

  • How funding allocations can change to drive more support to small-scale traditional farms

  • Ways the Farm Bill impacts Iowans with stories of how family farmers are affected

  • Specific Iowa programs that could benefit traditional Iowa farmers and local food systems

  • How the climate-smart/IRA funding will affect the Farm Bill and its impact on Iowa – including greenwashing harmful practices such as biodigesters and carbon pipelines and incorporating environmentally-beneficial practices that would make a difference

  • The current state of Congressional negotiations

  • How Farm Action, Iowa Farmers Union, and National Farmers Union are advocating for a fairer and more just 2023 Farm Bill

  • What to be on alert for and steps we can take to take to advocate for a fairer and more just 2023 Farm Bill


Maxwell and Lehman will begin with short presentations with Maxwell speaking from a national perspective and Lehman covering how the Farm Bill impacts Iowa. A vibrant discussion between the two follows to provide a greater understanding of Farm Bill issues moderated by JFAN Executive Director Diane Rosenberg.


The final third of the program will be devoted to questions and answers from our audience. Questions can either be submitted ahead of time by emailing or posed during the webinar.  


About Our Speakers


Joe Maxwell is co-founder and president of Farm Action and a former Executive Director for the Organization of Competitive Markets. He’s held key positions in political and initiative petition campaigns and served for 14 years in the Missouri State Legislator first as a state legislator and then as Lt. Governor. He and his brother are Missouri family farmers.


Aaron Lehman has led the Iowa Farmers Union as president since 2016 and previously served as IFU vice president, executive director and legislative director. He’s a fifth-generation family farmer from rural Polk County raising corn, soybeans, oats and hay in both organic and conventional rotations. He served on the National Farmers Union policy committee and is currently on the Advisory Board of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. 


The webinar is free. Pre-register here.

The Farm Bill and Factory Farms: Could the Farm Bill Be Encouraging CAFO Growth Near You? is organized by Jefferson County Farmers & Neighbors, Inc. and co-sponsored by Farm Action, Iowa Farmers Union, Iowa Environmental Council, Southeast Iowa Sierra Club, Poweshiek CARES, and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, Des Moines Branch. 

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