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(US-mo) Animal abuse charges cloud egg factory's expansion plans

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  • AnimalConcerns.org
    NEOSHO, Mo. - (KRT) - Rick Bussey pointed to his steak fajita. The dish was important to understanding just how unlikely it was that Bussey - a painting
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 7, 2005
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      NEOSHO, Mo. - (KRT) - Rick Bussey pointed to his steak fajita. The
      dish was important to understanding just how unlikely it was that
      Bussey - a painting contractor and cattle rancher - would find himself
      at the center of a dispute over chickens. It's a fight that has
      divided the town and pitted family against family.

      "I'm not an animal-rights nut. I'm here eating steak. I'm wearing
      leather boots. I like calf-roping," Bussey, 43, said at a local
      restaurant last week. "But what they did to those chickens was wrong."

      He admits he used to give little thought to the 1 million chickens
      living next door to him. It seemed like the chickens had always been
      there, over at Moark's sprawling egg factory on the outskirts of town
      in the state's deepest southwest corner. Even the stinging stench from
      tons of chicken manure was something like background noise to him.

      But two incidents earlier this year changed Bussey's mind. First,
      Moark, a Chesterfield, Mo.-based company, announced plans to at least
      double the number of chickens at its Neosho site, creating the largest
      such operation in the state. And then, by chance, Bussey saw workers
      dumping a mix of live and dead chickens into a tractor trailer, and he
      videotaped them. Four workers and the company have since been charged
      with criminal animal abuse.

      The resulting controversy has surprised many in this rural,
      politically conservative area. Some residents for the first time are
      questioning the large-scale animal facilities that blanket the region
      and which are major employers. Local politicians have been caught
      off-guard. And facing an unexpected tide of opposition, officials with
      the state Department of Natural Resources have delayed making a
      decision about Moark's future. A verdict on Moark's permit request,
      expected by August, has been pushed back until at least later this
      month.

      --
      full story:
      http://www.bradenton.com/mld/bradenton/news/nation/12842155.htm

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