What comes out of the south end of a chicken could cost well north of what poultry companies are able to absorb, industry members told a Maryland legislative panel Tuesday.Do you think the Washington Post would oppose a bill to force them to buy back "excess" unwanted newsprint at retail prices, and suck up the cost of handling?
Lawmakers are considering a measure that would make the Eastern Shore's five poultry firms, also known as integrators, responsible for the phosphorus-rich waste created by their contract growers.
The bill was the subject of a four-hour hearing Tuesday that pitted western shore legislators and environmentalists against farmers and Eastern Shore legislators.
“This act fails to understand the relationship between integrators and poultry growers," said Dave Patey, director of live operations for Mountaire Farms. The bill, he added, demonstrations that “Maryland is fast becoming an unfriendly state for business including the business of family farming.”
Environmental groups staged a rally before the hearing, featuring a person in a chicken suit and placards with messages such as "We all need CLEAN water."Supporters say it makes sense for poultry companies to deal with excess manure instead of individual farms because they have deeper pockets.
Contract growers wouldn't have to worry about losing the ability sell their manure or use it as fertilizer on their fields, said Sen. Richard Madaleno, D-18-Montgomery, as the bill's sponsor. Only the excess would become poultry companies' property.
Thursday, February 25, 2016
Maryland Farmers Hate Chickenshit Bill
Farmers blast Md. chicken manure bill