Although the term is sometimes used loosely to refer to any factory farm, "Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation" (CAFO) is a designation by the United States Environmental Protection Agency meaning any operation in which animals are fed in confined spaces, but specifically those which store a large number of animals and produce a large amount of water and manure waste as well as contributing pollutants to the surrounding environment.
The disambiguation of the term CAFO from AFO can be a bit confusing, but the main focus of the distinction lies in the size and impact of the operation, with CAFO being worse all around — which is why it is often associated with all工厂化农场, even if they don't meet EPA standards to qualify as a CAFO.
According to the EPA, an Animal Feeding Operation (AFO) is an operation in which "animals are kept and raised in confined situations. AFOs congregate animals, feed, manure and urine, dead animals, and production operations on a small land area. Feed is brought to the animals rather than the animals grazing or otherwise seeking feed in pastures, fields, or on rangeland."
CAFOs are AFOs that fall under one of theEPA's definitionsof Large, Medium or Small CAFOs, depending on the number of animals involved, how wastewater and manure are managed, and whether the operation is "a significant contributor of pollutants."
Although nationally accepted as a federal mandate, state governments can choose whether or not to enforce punishments and restrictions the EPA sets on these facilities. However, a repeated lack of compliance with EPA regulations or repeat excessive pollution from factory farms could result in a federal case against the company in question.
The Problem with CAFO
Animal rights activists和环保主义者相似地反对持续使用工厂农场，特别是那些符合EPA的人作为集中的动物饲养行动。这些农场产生了过多的污染和动物废物，以及消耗大量作物，人力和能量来维持。yabo彩票
Furthermore, the harsh conditions animals kept in these CAFO are often seen as violating the basic rights U.S. citizens believe animals are entitled to — although theAnimal Welfare Actexcludes farms from classification and investigation from their agencies.