Monday, December 28, 2009

Trial Lawyers Join Forces to Sue Farmers in Indiana

December 26, 2009
Lawyers targeting pig, dairy farms
Attorneys seek justice for neighbors allegedly injured by large operations
By Seth Slabaugh
Muncie Star Press

WINCHESTER, Ind. -- Neighbors who are fed up living next door to factory farms have found three high-powered trial lawyers who vow to make Randolph County "ground zero" in a legal food fight over how Indiana produces pork and milk.

Highly aggressive flies, harmful odors, stacks of dead animals and mismanagement of millions of gallons of manure are among the complaints of neighbors suing pork and dairy producers.
The trial lawyers are bringing multiple lawsuits challenging Indiana's industrial or factory model of producing milk and pork in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) promoted by Gov. Mitch Daniels' agriculture department.

It's a system that produces odors so intense that neighbors are suffering skin irritations, nausea, headaches, breathing difficulties, tightness of the chest, sinus infection, stress, burning eyes, noses and throats and other ailments, the lawsuits allege.

"There is a lot of discontent," said Indianapolis attorney Rich Hailey, a former president of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, now known as the American Association for Justice (AAJ). "We anticipate the potential filing of a dozen more cases in a short period of time."

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It’s too bad there won’t be anyone to sue when the grocery store shelves are empty or we become dependent on another country for our food supply. Suing family farmers because of smells that come from the production of food animals will be the first step to that happening. These are the same people that are also pushing to regulate crop farmers from ever having dust blow off their fields. Growing food isn’t an easy job. Getting sued for doing it will only lead to fewer families on the land.


caheidelberger said...

I think they are suing over more than smells. Aggressive flies, stacks of dead animals, mismanagement of millions of gallons of manure: are these ag practices you defend as well? Or are the neighbors making all that up?

Sandy said...

There are these things called plants. Rumors are some of them are edible, even healthful. I think we might be able to eat them if meat becomes unavailable...

Dawn said...

I have a hard time believing that these farms are not EPA regulated. If they are not, then they need to be. However, if they ARE, they are not doing anything wrong. They are running a business. They are putting food on the grocery store shelves.

This is one reason that many farmers feel the need to make sure they buy up the ground around them... to keep things like this from happening.

The country life is amazing. I would not change it for anything in the world. But those who wish to move into it need to realize that the country life is also a WAY of life... a LIVING... for a majority of the people who are in it. And to be upset because of the smell of manure? That's manure in and of itself.