Brownfield Ag News: HSUS forms national ag advisory council (click for audio)

HSUS forms national ag advisory council

Posted May 9, 2016 by Ken Anderson

Nebraska rancher Kevin Fulton discusses formation of the HSUS national ag advisory council at a news conference in Lincoln. He was joined by HSUS director of rural outreach Marty Irby and Nebraska state director for HSUS Jocelyn Nickerson.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has announced the formation of a national agriculture advisory council.

The announcement came Friday afternoon at a news conference in Lincoln. Nebraska rancher Kevin Fulton, who will serve as chairman of the council, says they want to build alliances with other farmers and ranchers who oppose what Fulton calls “inhumane factory farming practices”.

“There’s billions of farm animals in this country—millions right here in Nebraska—that are so severely confined that they can’t even turn around. They can’t spread their limbs. They lead their entire lives this way,” Fulton said. “That’s wrong and it’s unacceptable. These archaic, inhumane practices are truly a disgrace to the industry and they need to go away.”

Observing the HSUS event on Friday was Ansley Mick, executive director of We Support Agriculture, a coalition of Nebraska ag groups formed to combat HSUS initiatives.

“The Humane Society web site encourages folks to eat less meat—and, in fact, it encourages switching to a plant-based diet—to eat less meat, eat fewer animal-based products,” Mick said. “I just don’t understand how you can necessarily partner with an organization who is interested in putting you out of business.”

But Fulton says HSUS is not out to eliminate animal agriculture.

“That is something that has been propagated by the opposition to demonize us, because they cannot defend the practices,” he says.

Other members of the national ag council include Chris Petersen of Iowa, Mike Callicrate of Colorado, Pete Eshelman of Indiana, Paul Muegge of Oklahoma, Carrie Balkcom of Colorado, Will Harris of Georgia and Joe Logan of Ohio.