Hog Farm Expansion Generates Concern

Emily Walkenhorst reported earlier this week at Arkansas Online that, “The owners of C&H Hog Farms and the international corporation that supplies the operation’s swine are planning to apply for a permit to operate another farm, this one in a flood-prone area just south of Hartman.

“The proposal has angered nearby farmers and some residents of Hartman and other parts of Johnson County who are concerned about possible flooding and odor from such a farm.

JBS, the Brazilian company that is proposing the hog farm, said the location is advantageous for the company because of its proximity to related facilities and that it should be safe from flooding.”

Ms. Walkenhorst noted that, “JBS spokesman Cameron Bruett told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on Friday that the site of the farm ‘is not known to have flooded’ since a levee was constructed to protect it from the Arkansas River, but others in the area — including the Hartman mayor — disputed that claim.

“‘JBS nor the farm owners desire to build a farm where flooding is likely,’ Bruett said in an email.

Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality regulations don’t note requirements related to flood plains.”

The article pointed out that, “C&H Hog Farms, near Mount Judea in Newton County, already has drawn the ire of many concerned about the environmental risk its hog manure poses to the Buffalo National River, the nation’s first national river.

“That operation sits on Big Creek, about 6 miles from where the creek converges with the Buffalo. Environmental groups and others fear that manure from the farm — the only federally classified large hog farm in the river’s watershed — could find its way into the Buffalo River and pollute the water, like what has happened in other states.”

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