Thursday, December 01, 2005

Hogs, NIMBYs, Dopes

The Inside Dope blog has been the site of an ongoing debate about the proposed pork processing plant being vaguely discussed for East Moline. There's a group trying to convince people that having one of these will cause an influx of concentrated animal feed operations (CAFOs), or basically commercial hog lots. I haven't seen a great increase in cattle farms in response to meat packing plants, but maybe they're right.

The secretive process taking place for the last few months over there would incite a riot among blog-readers if it happened in Davenport, but as usual, things are different in Illinois. Annexing land to the city without telling the citizens what its really for makes the Davenport IOC hotel ordeal look like a public process.

My big question with the processing plant is the smell. If that can be negated, its just another heavy industry with its associated traffic problems. The smaller question is whether locals will work there, or if it will bring in mostly immigrants, who then become locals. Hopefully a mixture of both, and I would think some of the folks that stand around Labor Ready would be happy to do a nasty, but decent-paying job like that. The temp jobs they end up doing for $7 or $8 an hour aren't exactly glamorous.

If these concerns could be answered, my next question is "If they don't want it, can we put it in our failing Eastern Iowa Industrial Center?"


Anonymous said...

Let's say the plant processes 10,000 hogs per week. Under that assumption several/many local containment farms would be required to supply the weekly quota. Each of those facilities has a need to dispose of the resulting manure. Are there open pits/hog lagoons? Surface water contamination? Ground water contamination? What about the air pollution of the stench of the maure throughout our existing communities? A containment farms with a total of 40000 hogs produces as much fecal waste as a community with 100,000 people. Is there a substantial plan to process this waste? To monitor these facilities?

And finally what about a discussion about the health and potential disease of the animals raised in these enviornments and the resultant effect on the folks who consume these products.... Quite a price to pay for labor ready jobs.

QuadCityImages said...

Judging from the previous post, hogs can only be trucked a few miles.

Is there already a pork processing center around here?

If there's not, why did one of these CAFOs recently open near Milan where Ms. Muir (one of the people opposed to the project) lives?

Were they just throwing the dice that a processing plant would open up before they go broke, or is it possible that hogs can be trucked longer distances?

1000 jobs is nothing I'm willing to sneeze at. Especially with the arsenal losing more than that over the next few years. Now they just need to prove that it won't smell.

Anonymous said...

These are not Labor Ready jobs. PERIOD. These are starting at a minimum of 11.00 dollars an hour. Minimum. This is an unbeleivable shot in the arm for the QC's. Can you transport livestock several hundred miles? YES. Do you see cattle confinement lots all over the QC's because we have IBP (Tyson)? NO. So saying that hog confinement lots will spring up through out the QC's arguement is just, well, hog wash. The EPA will be on the waste & pollution issue, rest assured. We would be stupid not to jump at this opportunity. The same issues came up with IBP (Tyson) operation years ago. Since then the technology has improved tremendously since that operation was constructed. It has been proven that these operations can co-exist in a envirometally friendly habitat. Don't farmers spread manure on their fields and pastures for a natural fertilizer? YES. Does anyone question that they are contaminating well water? NO. Poster #1 has valid questions. Most have already been proven not so. Seems that poster #1 is thinking that these animals are going to be bread & raised at this facitity. Asking questions like hog pits & lagoons, stench, fecal waste, health & disease, water contamination, people consuming these products may be at risk.All are valid questions, but are on the verge of scare tatics. Since most of these have been proven invalid many times over. This is not a "Hog Holiday Inn". These animals are going to be transported & processed and then consumed. I happen to like ham on Christmas. Bring it on!!!!