Sioux Falls Leaders Urge City Council to Hit Pause on Major New Hog-Processing Plant
For Immediate Release
Contact: [email protected]
SIOUX FALLS, South Dakota – Citizens for a Sustainable Sioux Falls (CSSF), a community network dedicated to preserving the spirit of Sioux Falls and the beauty of its natural resources, today released a letter urging city council members to pause the planned construction of a major new hog-processing plant within 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 56 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 local businesses and organizations were joined by more than 40 concerned Sioux Falls residents who signed letters to the city council.
The letter addresses a 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.
“We love our city, and we don’t want to see its future growth jeopardized with short-term thinking,” said CSSF executive director and Sioux Falls native Robert Peterson. “The city council should take the time it needs to explore options and engage residents in an open dialogue about their concerns.”
“If the goal is to promote economic growth and development, then we need to attract high- skilled, high-wage jobs,” said Matt Marnach, president and CEO of Dakota Performance Solutions. “Unfortunately, a massive hog-slaughtering complex could do far more harm than good for our economic future.”
“This project would mean millions of hogs transported and slaughtered within city limits each year, yet there have been no guardrails established to deal with the traffic or odors drifting into our neighborhoods,” said former Lieutenant Governor of South Dakota Steve Kirby. “Sioux Falls shouldn’t rush ahead to sign off on this project without considering the consequences.”
“Businesses in Sioux Falls are already struggling to find enough workers, partly because we don’t have enough affordable housing for working families,” said Paul Schock of Bird Dog Equity Partners. “A sprawling new hog-processing plant would only add to the economic pressures facing local employers and residents.”
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.
ABOUT US: Citizens for a Sustainable Sioux Falls highlights the voices of community leaders, employers, and local residents who share a passion for ensuring that Sioux Falls remains the best little city in America to live, work, open a business, or raise a family. Our work aims to ensure Sioux Falls continues to grow as a thriving center of commerce, culture, and technology by preserving the spirit of our community and the beauty of its natural resources. Learn more at CitizensForASustainableSiouxFalls.com.