Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station

Local group says “no” to another pork processing plant

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A nonprofit group is urging city leaders in Sioux Falls to place a moratorium on the construction of a $600 million pork processing plant.

Citizens for a Sustainable Sioux Falls say the impacts of odor contamination, noise contamination and traffic congestion haven’t been sufficiently studied.

According to a press release, the Citizens for a Sustainable Sioux Falls (CSSF) released a letter urging city council members to pause the planned construction of a major new hog-processing plant within the city limits until further study is done and community input is considered.

“A new hog processing plant in our community could have profound implications on the health, safety, and quality of life of area residents,” wrote 57 prominent Sioux Falls businesses and organizations. “Yet, there has been no serious attempt to study the potential impacts of this project, including odor, traffic, water quality, workforce, and affordable housing.”

The letter addresses  controversial proposal by Nebraska-based Wholestone Farms to open a 170-acre complex with a wastewater lagoon near the heart of Sioux Falls. The proposed site, near residential neighborhoods and businesses, would be used to process up to six million hogs annually.

Locally-owned Wholestone Farms says the plant’s design and odor will not be a hazard to the area’s quality of life.

But a recent survey released by CSSF indicates that concerns about the project are widely held. It found that three-quarters of registered voters in Sioux Falls want city leaders to “halt the project until more study is done on the impact to property values, traffic, and living conditions.” Large majorities also felt it would negatively impact odors, the availability of housing, water quality, traffic and congestion, and property values.

Smithfield Foods, owned by WH Group of China, already calls Sioux Falls home where its plant processes around 5 percent of the nation’s pork supply every day. Smithfield is the largest pig and pork producer in the world.

Learn more at CitizensForASustainableSiouxFalls.com

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