http://newsobserver.com/24hour/busin...-6549128c.htmlTuesday, July 8, 2003 11:06PM EDT
Ohio orders Buckeye Egg Farm shut down
By ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS, ASSOCIATED PRESS
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The state Tuesday ordered the permanent shutdown of Ohio's largest egg producer because of years of complaints about pollution, foul odors and flies.
Buckeye Egg Farm was given until next June to close its 90 remaining barns and has until September 2004 to remove all manure. Thirty barns were closed previously.
"The pollution and nuisance problems caused by this farm during the last decade were intolerable," State Agriculture Director Fred Dailey said. "The sad legacy of mismanagement of Buckeye Egg Farm is rapidly coming to an end."
The company began operating in Ohio in 1982. Neighbors of the farms have complained about foul odors, insect and rodent infestations and creeks polluted by manure.
Buckeye Egg said it would appeal immediately to a state commission.
"We have demonstrated our ability to operate effectively in recent months and believe that allowing new owners to purchase and operate our farms is a more practical approach," the company said in a statement.
The order does not prohibit the company from selling its farms, said Deb Abbott, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Agriculture's livestock environmental permitting program.
Buckeye Egg produced 4 percent of the nation's eggs - 2.6 billion last year - from 14.8 million laying hens or chicks.
Dailey's order requires the company to remove all birds from barns, clean out feed bins, drain all water lines and shut off all water service.