Via Humane Society of the United States press release:
To advance humane and sustainable agricultural practices in Ohio, The Humane Society of the United States has formed an agriculture council made up of farmers and producers. The announcement was made at The HSUS’ Humane Lobby Day, a day when residents from across Ohio meet with legislators at the capital to advocate for stronger animal protection laws.
The Ohio Agriculture Council of The HSUS will work to connect livestock producers who manage their animals using higher animal welfare practices with consumers seeking higher welfare products, and will help other farmers transition to more humane animal management. The group will also showcase those farmers who are good stewards of their animals and the land and advocate for stronger rural communities. Additionally, the Ohio Agriculture Council will advise HSUS on issues affecting Ohio’s family farmers.
Mardy Townsend, a founding member of the new council, said: “As an Ohio cattle farmer, I believe small and mid-size family farmers have much common ground with The HSUS and Ohio consumers when it comes to the treatment of farm animals. Working together to address the future of animal agriculture and find solutions to animal welfare challenges is a positive step.”
Karen Minton, Ohio state director for The HSUS, said: “With animal agriculture being dominated by industrial agribusiness interests, it is important to support and work with Ohio’s sustainable farmers who strive to be good stewards of the animals and the land. We are pleased to have this great group of Ohio farmers and processors advising us on how best to provide that support.”
John Dinon, HSUS’ Ohio director of outreach and engagement, added, “HSUS members care deeply about where their food comes from and want to avoid products from industrial farms. We are excited to connect Ohio’s conscientious consumers to the kind of traditional family farmers they want to support.”
The founding members of the Ohio Agriculture Council are William Miller, an organic farmer from Butler County; Mardy Townsend, a grassfed beef producer from northeast Ohio; Bruce Rickard of Fox Hollow Farms in Knox County; Joe Logan, an Ohio farmer who works with the Ohio Environmental Council; and Warren Taylor, co-owner and “head dairy nerd” for Snowville Creamery in Pomeroy Ohio.