The GRACE Factory Farm Project (GFFP) works to create a sustainable food production system that is healthful and humane, economically viable, and environmentally sound. When invited by regional or grassroots groups, the GFFP helps rural communities, family ranchers and farmers around the country oppose the spread of new factory farms, and close down existing operations that adversely affect the health and well-being of communities.
Headed by economist Dr. William J. Weida, the GRACE Factory Farm Team consists of independent family farmers from across North America, as well as key staff members from the New York office. The eight consultants include two ranchers in Colorado, a rancher in Missouri, a hog farmer in Iowa, a crop farmer in Illinois, a cherry orchardist in Washington, an economist in Idaho, and a grain farmer in Alberta, Canada. Each consultant has fought factory farms in his or her local area, and many have been helping groups in and around their communities for years. The consultants are responsible for providing assistance in their home state and beyond, collectively reaching every region in the U.S. and Canada.
The GFFP is a vital resource that analyzes the promises and problems associated with proposed or existing factory farms, and develops community-based solutions to the problems caused by industrial agriculture. The services provided by the GFFP are free of charge to rural residents, community groups, and local entities working to stop factory farms.
The Factory Farm Project can provide assistance in many areas, including:
- Community organizing and support
- Identifying 'major' players, concerned citizens, important elements of the opposition, and general preferences of the local government
- Providing regional economic impact and development analysis of proposed or existing factory farms
- Generating scholarly research on social and economic costs, externalities, employment impacts, and multiplier effects of factory farm operations
- Teaching communities how to access, understand and use existing regulations concerning the development of factory farm facilities
- Providing assistance in compiling and understanding scientific data and studies
- Providing credible research about the health effects of factory farms
- Providing access to research, studies and literature from all parts of the country
- Participating in hearings and other speaking opportunities in order to educate the public and government officials about the realities of factory farms
- Sharing information and resources