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As Regulations Vanish, One Missouri County is Ground Zero for Factory Farming Debate

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As Regulations Vanish, One Missouri County is Ground Zero for Factory Farming Debate

Photo caption: The Thompson River sits next door to the permitted CAFO cite on Friday, March, 19, 2021, in Chillicothe, Missouri. […] (Danielle Pycior | for the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting). Flatland – March 30, 2021. This article by Mallory Daily was first co-published by Investigate Midwest, the website of The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting, a nonprofit, online newsroom, and the Columbia Missourian.

CHILLICOTHE, Missouri — In January 2020, a pork corporation came knocking in Livingston County.

United Hog Systems notified nearby landowners that they were filing an application for a 5,700-hog operation.

It was the first permit for a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) issued for the northwest Missouri county in more than two decades.

The timing was no accident. State lawmakers had recently passed legislation that would wipe a 1997 county ordinance off the books that allowed local officials to regulate such operations and the millions of gallons of waste they produce.

When the Missouri Department of Natural Resources approved the United Hog permit in May of 2020, local residents banded together to file an appeal. […]

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