Keep Your Farm Secure
The most important step to take is ensuring that you have no vulnerabilities in terms of animal care or environmental impact that could be exploited.
It’s about “YouTube-proofingâ€_x009d_ your operation and making sure there is nothing going on that you wouldn’t want to be broadcasted to the world. Activists have shown they are more than willing to exaggerate, fabricate or take things out of context, so we can’t give them any ammunition.
Make Yourself a Harder Target
- Take basic steps to secure your farm and facility, making it more difficult to access by intruders. These include: No Trespassing signage, motion-sensor lighting, security cameras, gates, fencing, etc.
- Consider what is visible from the road. Some groups are encouraging activists to constantly monitor farms and plants from public property to see if they can obtain photos or videos that can be used. Consider the “curb appealâ€_x009d_ of your operation and make any possible changes to prevent sensitive procedures from being viewed from public land or roadways.
- Implement a policy for handling visitors as well as requests for information. Activists will use any excuse to try to access a farm or facility, including misrepresenting their identity. Do not allow any unauthorized visitors to come onto your property for any reason and do not take claims at face value. Ask for credentials or identification and verify any claims (for example, call the company they claim to represent). Make sure all family members and employees know what your visitor process is and follow it every single time.
- Be cautious with hiring. Activists are constantly trying to get hired on farms and in plants. Never cut corners in your hiring process regardless of how urgently you need workers. Have a formal process including a written application and carefully check references by calling past employers’ main number —not the one listed on their application.
If you have questions, please contact Beth Meyer, director of consumer confidence for American Dairy Association North East, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 315.491.3892.