Officials at the Animal Agriculture Alliance say they are extremely dismayed, but not surprised, to learn that a number of groups have attempted to use the recent outbreak of H1N1 influenza to advance their anti-modern agriculture and animal rights agendas. The groups have criticized in particular modern livestock systems.
"Modern livestock facilities are designed to meet animals' specific needs, these facilities are better for controlling and reducing diseases than allowing animals to have uncontrolled interactions with wild animals and other potential disease vectors," said Kay Johnson Smith, Executive Vice President for the Animal Agriculture Alliance. "Attempting to connect modern farming and ranching to the current flu outbreak is a huge stretch and is completely irresponsible."
Smith added that modern housing is designed to allow the farmer to provide the best animal care possible and that modern designs drastically reduce introduction of disease vectors and are easy to clean, reducing opportunities for diseases to spread.