By Mallory Daily
In January 2020, a pork corporation came knocking in Livingston County.
United Hog Systems notified nearby landowners that they were filing an application for a 5,700-hog operation.
It was the first permit for a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) issued for the northwest Missouri County in more than two decades.
The timing was no accident. State lawmakers had recently passed legislation that would wipe a 1997 county ordinance off the books that allowed local officials to regulate such operations and the millions of gallons of waste they produce.
When the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (DNR) approved the United Hog permit in May of 2020, local residents banded together to file an appeal. They named themselves Poosey Neighbors United after their beloved nearby conservation area. In addition to the list of common concerns raised when huge animal feeding operations move in nearby, they feared that mismanagement of the CAFO's hog manure would compromise water quality in Poosey's fishing lakes and perhaps even their own water supply.