Sentience Institute US Factory Farming Estimates
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These estimates use the 2012 Census of Agriculture and EPA definitions of CAFOs to estimate the number of US farmed land vertebrates who are in CAFOs ("factory farms").
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Sales, Table 32
Meat chickens
1/2 Medium CAFO
81,250
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Animals per farm
Total animalsCumulativeCumulative %
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1 to 199991,818,0298,463,194,794100.000%Citations
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2000 to 159992,274,3098,461,376,76599.979%
2012 Census of Agriculture
https://www.agcensus.usda.gov/Publications/2012/Full_Report/Volume_1,_Chapter_1_US/usv1.pdf
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30,0001,759,1008,459,102,45699.952%
EPA CAFO definitions
https://www3.epa.gov/npdes/pubs/sector_table.pdf
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60,0007,627,1308,457,343,35699.931%
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100,00029,357,4298,449,716,22699.841%Notes
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200,000273,093,5378,420,358,79799.494%
There will be another Census of Agriculture out in 2017.
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300,000631,801,7128,147,265,26096.267%
Sales data was used when inventory was not available.
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500,0001,744,451,0767,515,463,54888.802%
This is a rough estimate based on the data we have available. Small farms can be factory farms too.
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5,771,012,4725,771,012,47268.190%
Pigs are assumed to be over 55 pounds, per the EPA regulations.
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8,463,194,794
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Inventory, Table 32
Egg-laying hens
1/2 Medium CAFO
19,500
Total % factory farmed
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Animals per farm
Total animalsCumulativeCumulative %These estimates use the number of animals per farm as the best available proxy for whether it’s a CAFO, with assumptions including that all Large CAFOs are factory farms, the upper half of Medium CAFO-sized farms are factory farms, and no Small CAFO-sized farms are factory farms. Note that the vast majority of farmed land animals are chickens. Lower and upper estimates are taken with the closest figures for farm size compared to the CAFO figures.
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1 to 492,725,732350,715,978100.000%
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50 to 99810,819347,990,24699.223%
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100 to 399998,790347,179,42798.992%
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400 to 31991,033,178346,180,63798.707%
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3200 to 99993,599,091345,147,45998.412%
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10000 to 19999
17,957,784341,548,36897.386%
Lower estimate
Upper estimate
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20000 to 49999
36,270,491323,590,58492.266%
Meat chickens
99.841%99.931%
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50000 to 99999
18,067,593287,320,09381.924%Egg chickens98.707%98.992%
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100000 or more
269,252,500269,252,50076.772%Turkeys99.336%99.772%
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350,715,978Pigs95.781%97.884%
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Cows50.100%67.714%
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Sales, Table 32
Turkeys
1/2 Medium CAFO
35,750Total land99.27%99.56%
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Animals per farm
Total animalsCumulativeCumulative %We lack US census data for fish farm size, but consensus in the field seems to be that virtually all fish farms are factory farms in terms of confinement, disease, and other metrics.
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1 to 1999275,382286,030,261100.000%
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2000 to 7999376,577285,754,87999.904%
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8000 to 159991,246,107285,378,30299.772%
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16000 to 29999
4,598,901284,132,19599.336%
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30000 to 59999
27,274,512279,533,29497.729%
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60000 to 99999
45,428,208252,258,78288.193%
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100000 or more
206,830,574206,830,57472.311%
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286,030,261
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Inventory, Table 21
Pigs
1/2 Medium CAFO
1,625
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Animals per farm
Total animalsCumulativeCumulative %
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1 to 24244,25065,846,785100.000%
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25 to 49116,80865,602,53599.629%
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50 to 99146,96765,485,72799.452%
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100 to 199201,46065,338,76099.228%
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200 to 499683,97765,137,30098.923%
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500 to 9991,384,92164,453,32397.884%
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1000 to 19993,662,16863,068,40295.781%
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2000 to 499914,687,19959,406,23490.219%
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5000 or more44,719,03544,719,03567.914%
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65,846,785
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Inventory, Table 16
Cows
1/2 Medium CAFO (beef/veal)
650
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1/2 Medium CAFO (dairy)
450
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Animals per farm
Total animalsCumulativeCumulative %
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1 to 91,179,62589,994,614100.000%
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10 to 192,350,56588,814,98998.689%
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20 to 496,907,69686,464,42496.077%
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50 to 998,161,88279,556,72888.402%
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100 to 19910,456,31071,394,84679.332%
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200 to 49915,851,26860,938,53667.714%
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500 to 99911,881,86245,087,26850.100%
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1000 to 249911,058,59533,205,40636.897%
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2500 to 49996,121,37022,146,81124.609%
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5000 or more16,025,44116,025,44117.807%
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89,994,614
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US Factory Farming Estimates
 
 
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