Free «The Role of America’s Biggest Agribusiness Companies in the Pollution of our Rivers, Lakes and Coastal Waters» Essay Sample

Rumpler tries to show the effects of agribusiness to the people and the entire community. The purpose of the source is not to only show how bad agribusiness could be put also explains how agribusiness can be a useful to for the future when food security is needed. The source is able to explain the cause of poor quality of water that has made other areas of the world to be a no go zone such as the Gulf of Mexico among other lakes and streams due to pollution. The author also says that agribusiness and entity of farming is not an inherent polluting activity, but it is due to today Agri practices- a shift from the use of natural available farm manure to most expensive and chemical intensive products. He also added that the changes made to the shift of corporate agri-business is not an accident, but are decisions that are conducted in boardrooms. Such decisions are the leading cause of pollution to most of the waterways.

The author also shows how the big agribusiness becomes a key polluter of the American water ways. In he’s statements, agriculture has contributed has contributed in making more than 200000 miles of streams and rivers as well as 2000 square miles of lakes polluted to accommodate significant activities such as fishing and swimming or the maintenance of aquatic wildlife. He also indicates that for the last several decades, the change that has taken place in the agricultural systems has increased the efforts and power of agribusiness hence increases the manifestation of extensive pollution that includes: The control taken by some companies over the food system- the four biggest firms in the sector can produce more than 70% of beef, 60% of pork, and 505 of chicken meat.

Due to this factor it has given these companies the control over the market competition and also the procedures and practices that the farmers use to raise these products or food. As a matter of fact, due to intensive implementation of agribusiness, companies as well as industries that produces pork and chicken foods have integrated models that give them the obligation to take control over the production process shifting it from animal birth to delivery of meat over supermarkets and wholesalers store shelves. Rumple has also how agribusiness has lined how the Americans produce their food nowadays. He says that through the use of vertical integration models, control that the firms/industries on agricultural markets as well as the power to determine the public policy large agribusiness industries have reshaped and re-engineered the productions of American food, for example, the shares of milk producing cows that are ranged in 300 cows has increased from 40% to 78%. Similar shifts have taken place in pork and chicken industries magnifying the pollution of the waterways. In addition, he also shows how agribusiness policy changes has propelled plantation of chemical concentrated corn for animal feed and corn syrup that further contributes to pollution of the waterways.

The author is also able to use case study demonstrations in this source to support the idea that corporate agribusiness industries and firms are the source of the countries great water pollution problems. In the case studies he cites that: Chicken farming produces large amounts of laden poultry litter used in pollution of the water ways. Perdue’s operations conducted on Del-marva contribute to persistent problems of low dissolved oxygen and blooms of algae in the Bay of Chesapeake. More than 500 million produce of chickens on Delmarva many of which are raised by Perdue’s farmers produce more than 1 billion pounds of chicken litter per year. The nutrients from chicken by-products contribute to increased concentration of algae blooms that reduces that amount of oxygen concentration in Chesapeake Bay during summer. Among other examples of how chicken firms pollute the waterways is that Tyson Food chicken producer that has led to degradation of the quality of water in Illinois River. He indicate that there are more that 3000 poultry farms near the rivers water shed that produces waste that cannot be equated to waste produced by 12 million people. The manure produced from the poultry firms are spread to farms without being treated leading to extensive pollution of the waterways with algae blooms and excessive amounts of phosphorus. Another chicken operated plant that continuously pollutes the waterways is the pilgrim’s pride- the company is now owned by a Brazilian firm known as JBS. The chicken product producing company according to the author is the leading pollutant of nitrogen thus reducing the quality of water in Texas. A lake in the area that has been a recreational facility is the past in faced with fish kills and algae blooms. The author also provides another case study showing the pollution impacts agribusiness. The use of concentrated hog farming has led to the pollution of waterways in America. Waste products from hog managed companies such as Smithfield Foods has led to the degradation of water qualities in North Carolina. The massive use of agribusiness chemicals has led to massive killings of fish in river Neuse. He explains that the increase in the amount of nitrogen in the river increase the growth of algae blooms which reduces the percentage of oxygen in the river leading to suffocation of fish. Rumpler also indicates that despite the evidence that Rivers in Illinois are suffering from nutrient pollution. Giant Cargill pork factory releases increased amounts of nitrate pollutions from its slaughter houses.

The other case discussed by the author is the massive beef processing industries and firms. Brazilian company JBS is one of the top beef producers in the region. According to the author the organization was fined $1.9 million dollars for environmental pollution from its plant located in Pennsylvania. The source depicts that large amounts of E.coli and ammonia were the main pollutants associated with the firm’s pollution. He also stipulates that the emergence of dairy factory driven by the increased demand of milk products in America has brought harmful environmental problems. Vreba Hoff is one of the milk industries in the area causing pollution.

Although the authors has shown the agribusiness related problems in America he also counts on the states and federal government measures taken to protect the waterways from extensive pollution. He takes about the following measures used to restore the already polluted waterways:

  1. A ban to the worst practices such as the creation of new CAFOs and other agricultural practices like over-application of chemical intensified fertilizers that lead to pollution.
  2. Accrediting and guarantying of clean water protection of all the America’s waterways such as lakes, streams, and rivers.
  3. The organizations are purported to hold corporate responsibilities for the pollution by clarifying their own legal measures responsible for the waste they organizations produce.
  4. Enforcement of the current laws that require the agribusiness operations to meet specified pollutions limits so as to restore polluted waterways that have refrained from better health standards.
  5. According to the writers view of the source environmental laws should be polished to that any further bridging of the water pollution laws will result to heavy penalties.
  6. He also suggests that transparency should be created among the citizens and the laws on access to data and information regarding to CAFOs and other agribusiness programs and facilities. The distribution of information should be communal centered so that it can address a huge magnitude of people. He also adds that the information concerning the discharge of pollutants to the environment will be an added advantage in safeguarding water quality.
  7. Lastly, the author considers that encouragement of the people on better agricultural reforms and so as to ensure that the American people are using clean and health water from streams, lakes, and rivers. In addition, all the wild animals dependent to the waterways ways should continue enjoying fresh waters.


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