ASPCA Condemns Latest Senate Farm Bill Proposal as Harmful to Animals

June 11, 2024

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.), Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, released a new framework of priorities for the Senate Farm Bill that includes language based on the Ending Agricultural Trade Suppression (EATS) Act – a dangerous overreach of federal power that would eliminate existing state and local animal welfare laws, including bans on cruel farming practices. In response, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) issued the following statement:

“The proposal released by Senator Boozman includes language based on the disastrous EATS Act as seen in the House Farm Bill. This provision threatens animal welfare, ignores the will of voters across the country, and abandons higher-welfare farmers and ranchers, while propping up cruel industrial agriculture systems that put us all in danger,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of Government Relations for the ASPCA. “Congressional leaders have a responsibility to reject the predatory systems that perpetuate cruelty to animals, and we urge them to pass a final Farm Bill that upholds state farm animal protection laws, institutes much-needed funding and transparency measures to support a more humane food system, and includes both Goldie’s Act and the SAFE Act, bipartisan bills that are critical to ensuring the welfare of dogs, horses, and other animals.”

This concerning framework follows the release of an initial outline from Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), which included groundbreaking funding to support farmers and accelerate the transition from concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) to more humane and climate-friendly systems. Chair Stabenow’s plan also calls for much-needed oversight of industrial animal agriculture by instituting mandatory annual reporting on the depopulation of farm animals, requiring more transparency from an industry that has cruelly depopulated millions of birds using ventilation shutdown during the ongoing avian influenza outbreak. Unfortunately, Sen. Boozman’s proposal lacks any concrete steps to reform the consolidated factory farm system, including these critical funding and transparency provisions.

In addition to posing a serious threat to farm animal welfare, Sen. Boozman’s framework also fails to address much-needed improvements to the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and does not include a prohibition on horse slaughter. Including Goldie’s Act in the Farm Bill would ensure that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) upholds its responsibility to enforce the AWA and protect animals in commercial breeding facilities, including in puppy mills. The Farm Bill should also include the bipartisan Save America’s Forgotten Equines (SAFE) Act, a bill adding horses to an existing prohibition on slaughtering dogs and cats for human consumption, which passed as part of the 2018 Farm Bill. This would, for once and for all, prohibit the commercial slaughter of horses in the U.S., and end their export for that purpose abroad.

The framework, however, does include a positive provision for companion animals that would reauthorize funding for the Pet and Women Safety (PAWS) Act. The PAWS Act, which is also included in the Stabenow framework and the House Farm Bill, would provide vital emergency and transitional pet shelter and housing assistance grants to support survivors of domestic violence and their pets.

For more information or to contact your members of Congress to urge them to pass a more humane Farm Bill that protects animals, people, and the planet, please visit