Andrzej Lepper, leader of Poland's Samoobrona ("Self-Defense"), has won a substantial place for his rural union in the Polish Parliament. Reuters called his third place finish with ten percent of the vote "stunning." According to The Financial Times, September 25, 2001, Mr. Lepper said "We will do everything possible to make Poland stop serving as a market for the EU's agricultural surpluses...If things don't change, there will be a social explosion." Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. presented Mr. Lepper, a fierce defender of family hog farms in Poland, with AWI's Albert Schweitzer medal in June.
and the US
United States District Judge Malcolm J. Howard upheld the right of citizens to sue polluting pork plants in the case of Neuse Riverkeeper, et al. v. Smithfield Foods, Inc. Environmentalists and family farmers are claiming that Smithfield's cruel corporate pork factories in North Carolina are operating illegally: without proper permits under the Clean Water Act and by disposing of hog waste on fields, thus spreading pollution. In ruling against Smithfield's motion to have the case dismissed, Judge Howard held that every industrial hog factory must have a Clean Water Act permit and that it is illegal for hog factories to spray hog waste on fields without a permit. Smithfield could face significant civil and criminal liabilities as a direct result.
Waterkeeper Alliance's Rick Dove commented, "We are very pleased with the Court's decision, which recognizes citizens' right to stand up to the millionaire hog barons who have destroyed North Carolina's waterways, shattered its rural communities, poisoned its groundwater and impoverished family farmers and fishermen." President of Waterkeeper Alliance, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., said "This is an outlaw industry which can only make money by breaking the law. Smithfield deliberately locates its factories in rural states where it can easily dominate state enforcement agencies. This decision puts every pork factory in the country on notice that the Marshall has come to Dodge." According to former hog farmer Don Webb, President of the Alliance for Responsible Swine Industries, "This decision will help break Smithfield's death grip on the American family farm."