Food & Water Watch

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Food & Water Watch
Food & Water Watch logo.png
Founded2005 (2005)
FounderWenonah Hauter (Executive Director)
FocusEnvironmental protection
HeadquartersWashington, D.C., United States
Area served
Key people
Maude Barlow (Chairperson)

Food & Water Watch is a Washington, D.C.-based non-governmental organization group with an office also in Los Angeles, California, which focuses on corporate and government accountability relating to food, water, and corporate overreach. Resulting issue areas include stopping fossil fuel and fossil fuel extraction, regulating factory farms, advocating for renewable energy, fighting water privatization, stopping bad trade deals, increasing transparency in our food system, and standing up for human rights. The organization was founded by staff from Public Citizen in 2005.

Food & Water Watch was the first U.S. national organization to call for a ban on fracking[1] and helped achieve bans in New York (2014)[2] and Maryland (2017).[3] It was the first to break the news of the high rate of salmonella in US chicken processing plants in July 2006.[4] It has also been critical of the growing bottled water industry for health and environmental concerns.[5] On August 24, 2007, it announced success in its effort to get Starbucks Coffee to stop using milk originating from rBGH-treated cows [6][7][8]

The organization does not take government or corporate donations.[9] Charity Watch rates it an "A" grade.[10]


  • "The Clean Energy Revolution:" an anti-fracking march held during the 2016 Democratic National Convention.[11]
  • "Off Fossil Fuels Campaign": a distributed organizing program launched in 2017
  • "Public Water for All": Food & Water Watch's program to oppose the privatization of public water utilities.[12]
  • Promotion of sustainable agriculture, local, organic farming and small-scale agriculture.
  • The "Load of Crap" campaign, an educational campaign about the dangers of factory farm waste/waste disposal and overuse of antibiotics on factory farms that included a Times Square billboard advertisement.
  • Restricting the practice of aquaculture in American waters.
  • Protection of drinking water standards
  • Efforts to prevent sourcing of milk from cows treated with rBGH.

Food & Water Justice[edit]

Food & Water Justice is the organization's legal department, which files lawsuits and provides legal analysis to further the organization's campaigns. It has supported work opposing the use of pollution trading to solve environmental challenges as well as calls for more regulations of concentrated animal feeding operations.[13][14][15]

Food & Water Watch sued the USDA's Farm Service Agency in 2017 for “failing to adequately consider environmental impacts before supporting a loan guarantee for a poultry operation on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.” The organization's lawyers also backed the Environmental Protection Agency in a 2016 suit that challenged the agency's practice of making public the location of permitted concentrated animal feeding operations.[16][17]

BP Whistleblower

Following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Disaster, a subcontractor at BP's Atlantis oil rig provided “e-mails, a BP database and other documents” to Food & Water Watch. These documents indicated that BP had violated its own policies by not having all the necessary engineering documents on board the Atlantis when the rig started operations in 2007.[18] The subcontractor, Kenneth Abbott, would later file a lawsuit with Food & Water Watch against then Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and the Minerals and Management Service. The lawsuit sought to stop the operation of Atlantis.[19]

Food & Water Action[edit]

Food & Water Action, originally Food & Water Action Fund, is the organization's political arm, and is classified as a 501(c)(4). It has endorsed candidates in a number of election races.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Ban Fracking Everywhere". Food & Water Watch. September 11, 2015. Archived from the original on March 12, 2017. Retrieved 2017-05-24.
  2. ^ Weltman, Eric (February 27, 2015). "How New York Activists Banned Fracking". In These Times. ISSN 0160-5992. Archived from the original on May 9, 2017. Retrieved 2017-05-31.
  3. ^ Wiggins, Ovetta; Hicks, Josh (March 28, 2017). "Maryland Senate gives final approval to fracking ban". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on August 14, 2017. Retrieved 2017-08-13.
  4. ^ ElAmin, Ahmed (July 6, 2006). "Top poultry processors faulted for high Salmonella rates". Food Production Daily. Archived from the original on February 9, 2013. Retrieved 2017-08-13.
  5. ^ Denner, Diana (June 7, 2006). "Bottling Water Concerns". Ithaca Times. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-24.
  6. ^ Cook, Christopher D. (December 31, 2012). "'Foodopoly' by Wenonah Hauter: Book Review Archived 2013-04-14 at the Wayback Machine". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-08-13.
  7. ^ "Starbucks Agrees to Hold the Hormones For Good" (Press release). Food & Water Watch. August 24, 2007. Archived from the original on September 13, 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-27.
  8. ^ "Starbucks Letter to F&WW". Food & Water Watch. August 24, 2007. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-27.
  9. ^ "Ways to Give". Food & Water Watch. August 18, 2015. Archived from the original on August 14, 2017. Retrieved 2017-05-24.
  10. ^ Charity Rating Guide and Watchdog Report, Volume Number 59, December 2011
  11. ^ "About - March for a Clean Energy Revolution". March for a Clean Energy Revolution. Archived from the original on 2017-05-16. Retrieved 2017-05-31.
  12. ^ "This Is How the Trump Administration Will Privatize Our Infrastructure". Retrieved 2018-02-05.
  13. ^ "Louisiana crafts rules for buying and selling water pollution credits". Retrieved 2018-01-24.
  14. ^ "Advocacy Group Mounts Legal Challenge to Pollution Trading Permit in Pennsylvania". Retrieved 2018-01-24.
  15. ^ "EPA's glyphosate report now a spring thing (maybe)". Retrieved 2018-01-24.
  16. ^ "Advocacy group sues USDA over poultry operation loan guarantee". Retrieved 2018-01-24.
  17. ^ "EPA's glyphosate report now a spring thing (maybe)". Retrieved 2018-01-24.
  18. ^ "BP Was Told of Safety Issues on Another Rig".
  19. ^ "Whistleblower Sues to Stop Another BP Rig From Operating".
  20. ^ "Food & Water Action Announces New Jersey Candidate Endorsements". Archived from the original on 2017-12-22. Retrieved 2017-12-21.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°54′33.2″N 77°2′15″W / 38.909222°N 77.03750°W / 38.909222; -77.03750