Don’t Force Country to Accept Processed Imported Meat

Broiler chickens graze on organic pastures and live in pens that protect them from predators, direct sun light, and wind at Nick’s Organic Farm, owned by Nick Maravell in Adamstown, MD on Friday, July 12, 2013. The enclosures are light enough to be moved by hand, each day, one consecutive section at a time. This allows the pasture to easily recover from the grazing. The farm produces Black Angus beef, chicken, turkey, eggs, hay, soybeans, corn, alfalfa, orchard grass, rye; and other crops. The cattle are100% grass-fed receiving certified organic pasture, certified organic hay (in winter), water and mineral salts mixed with sea kelp. The cattle are not fed hormones, antibiotics or animal products. Poultry feed from grain is ground from organic grain. The poultry also graze on organic pastures. The farm has conducted on-farm research with federal, state and non-profit agencies to refine organic practices.  An organization such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) center in Beltsville has been able to conduct research to improve organic crops and to breed and manage the cattle so that they have. USDA Photos by Lance Cheung.

Target: U.S. President Barack Obama

Goal: Retract ultimatum designed to force nation to accept processed U.S. poultry that will hurt small farmers.

President Obama is threatening to pull agricultural support if South Africa doesn’t accept a deal that will hurt the country’s small farm operations. The African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) is projected to cost South Africa thousands of jobs and devastate small poultry farmers. Yet if the nation refuses the deal, Obama has said that it will lose U.S. support.

Agoa will allow the U.S. to import its poultry meat into South Africa, overriding the nation’s efforts to block foreign meat that either come with an increased risk of dangerous bacteria or must be loaded with preservatives to keep it safe. It will also make it much harder for small and emerging poultry farmers to compete, threatening many jobs and livelihoods just so that U.S. companies can make even more obscene profits.

Large factory farms in the United States are also notorious for their horrific conditions that cause an immense amount of suffering to the animals before they’re brutally slaughtered. Small farmers are at least more likely to allow their animals to live naturally and happily before they’re killed.

Nations like South Africa need to be allowed to develop their economies independently. The U.S. is supposed to value small businesses, but this deal will destroy them for the profits of its own companies. Sign to demand that President Obama retract this ultimatum and stop trying to exploit less developed nations.


Dear President Obama,

It’s come to my attention that you are attempting to force the nation of South Africa into the African Growth and Opportunity Act by threatening to withdraw agricultural support if its government does not comply. This agreement would force the country to accept imports of poultry from the U.S., which is in direct contradiction to South Africa’s attempt to keep foreign meat out for health and business reasons.

Agoa would hurt small farmers in South Africa as they would have to compete with the cheap, processed imports from the U.S. Thousands of people are projected to lose their jobs just so the U.S. meat industry can increase its profits. Do you really want to be responsible for this?

This act is a clear attempt to extort money from a nation that needs our support while it develops its economy. Immediately retract this ultimatum and stop trying to hurt South Africa’s small farmers.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

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