Planting Seeds - Food & Farming News from CDFA

State Ag Board Focuses on Farm Animal Welfare

Photo of State Board President Craig McNamara and California Agriculture Secretary at animal welfare meeting.

State Board President Craig McNamara greets the audience at the July 27 meeting. California Agriculture Secretary Karen Ross (left) also addressed the gathering.

Our last state board meeting generated a lot of discussion and feedback from farmers and ranchers from across the state. Farm animal welfare is a passionate issue on all sides of the discussion. It is a topic important to California agriculture and an important topic for the public.

Speakers at the board meeting educated all of us on a controversial issue that has many dynamics.  It did not focus on any one issue or farm animal sector – it looked at agriculture as a whole.

California’s farmers and ranchers care a great deal about the livestock in their care and continue to improve on the already advanced animal stewardship practices conducted on our farms.

98 percent of the U.S. population is not involved in production agriculture. We need to do more to educate consumers and the public on how food is produced, processed and delivered to our table.

This meeting on farm animal welfare was a step in that direction.

Consumer interest in our food system continues to increase and it is our job as farmers and ranchers to tell our stories, share our passion and demonstrate the great stewardship that is occurring.

It was a great discussion, with diverse viewpoints, and an open mind by all parties. I look forward to future meetings on California agriculture that that engage the public and as well as our farmers and ranchers.

Photo of California State Veterinarian Dr. Annette Whiteford at the podium, presenting background information about the role of the state's agricultural community in food production and animal welfare.

California State Veterinarian Dr. Annette Whiteford presents background information about the role of the state's agricultural community in food production and animal welfare.

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