Blog for Rural America

The Center for Rural Affairs, a private, non-profit organization, is working to strengthen small businesses, family farms and ranches, and rural communities. Permission to reprint items from this web log is hereby granted, on the condition that clear credit is given to the original source of the material. If the blog provides information for a story, please let us know by sending an email to johnc@cfra.org.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Coporate Sow and Corporate Chicken on the Move

The Corporate Sow and Corporate Chicken on the Move

Mega corporate hog and chicken operations migrate to areas with fewest protections for local citizens.

- Residents in three eastern Indiana counties are pressuring county officials to control odors and pollution from rapidly growing numbers of industrial livestock operations moving into the area. Grant, Jay and Randolph county residents worry that mega hog and dairy operations will decimate their quality of life.

Over the last two months confinements for 23,000 finishing hogs have been proposed in Randolph County. North Carolina-based Maxwell Foods plans to build two large swine nurseries between the Indiana towns of Lynn and Modoc housing 38,400 nursery pigs. Maxwell also plans to build two other confinements near Modoc that would contain 15,484 pregnant sows, young females, nursery pigs, and finishing hogs.

Local residents have expressed concern that Indiana is encouraging corporate hog operations to move from North Carolina, where state policies have curtailed the dramatic expansion of corporate hog production in North Carolina that occurred in the 1990’s.

Randolph County's planning commission has voted against several CAFO ordinances. But local concerned citizens believe that the tide may be turning in favor of endorsing regulations for hog farms, due to the recent dramatic influx of hog operations.

“Before, the only thing the plan commission could see was the [first] dairy…what came to light…is a much bigger scheme,” said Randolph County resident Robbie Davis.

- Chicken lobbyists score big victory in South Carolina – As of this writing, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford had not decided whether to veto a bill that loosens regulation of large, industrial poultry farms.

The House voted 94-11 to ban county laws that require substantial distances between poultry farms and people’s homes. The Senate had previously voted 29-7 for restricting county regulation.

Corporate farming proponents have sought this legislation for ten years. The legislation nullifies county poultry ordinances that are stricter than the state’s law.

The S.C. Poultry Federation says county laws are so strict that they prevent chicken and turkey operations in some counties. However, Kershaw, one of the state’s top turkey-producing counties, is among the fewer than ten counties with strict local ordinances.

post a question or comment here or contact John Crabtree, johnc@cfra.org

Center for Rural Affairs
Values. Worth. Action.

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