Development of Short Educational Videos for CAFO Related Topics

Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) are encountering more resistance. There are cases where citizens file suit to stop application of a new or expansion of animal production facility; others petition the county commissioners to stop the facility via zoning or health ordinances. When extension personnel were asked about CAFOs, it became apparent that some user-friendly and brief information pieces are needed, especially those that are based in fact and able to capture the audience’s attention and address their emotions. Well-managed CAFOs tend to have less nutrient management and odor nuisance issues, and when needed, there are options to mitigate odor and improve nutrient management.  Many CAFOs have been shown to benefit the local economy, which is critical to rural communities. The videos are intended to be short so that the user can stay interested and choose next topics of interests. The goal is to capture users’ attention and provide them with essential facts rather than trying to push information to them.

What did we do?

The University of Missouri Extension team have created a series of short whiteboard videos that target concerned local citizens and county commissioners seeking information about the impacts of CAFOs on environment, economy, antibiotics, and health. Scripts were developed by the faculty based on facts and peer-reviewed publications. Artists were hired to develop the whiteboard videos. A total of five videos were developed in the first production round and posted onto a website. A website and YouTube Channel were created to present the videos.

What we have learned?

The team created the videos and showed to classes and university staff, to collect feedback and ideas to improve the videos. Iteration of the scrips, communication with the artists, panel review for clarity and improvement, are critical to the video production.

Implications of the project or research

General public who want to learn more about CAFOs or concerned about the potential impacts of newer, intensive animal farms are able to access research based information to answer their questions. Between 7/10/2018 and 3/1/19 the videos have a total of 963 views, CAFO Environmental Impact is the most viewed at 336.

What should people remember as take-home messages from your presentation?

More scientific based information and application of social media might be needed to convey more information, and stimulate non-agricultural and younger audiences to learn more about animal production facts.

Future plans

Based on the feedback and discussion, create more videos to promote science-based information pieces, to reach a broad audience.


Lim, Teng (Associate Professor and Extension Agricultural Engineer, Agricultural Systems Management, University of Missouri,

Massey, Ray; Bromfield, Cory; and Shannon, Marcia; University of Missouri

Additional information

Please visit to view the videos and to find more information.


Four of the videos were developed by small grants provided by the U.S. Pork Center of Excellence.



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