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Warren County plant seeks poultry slaughterhouse permit

By Alex Bridges -- abridges@nvdaily.com

Warren County could have its first abattoir -- or poultry slaughterhouse -- if officials give the OK.

The Planning Commission scheduled a public hearing for its Aug. 8 meeting on a request to build and run a poultry slaughterhouse at an established business in the Kelley Industrial Park. However, the industrial zoning of the property at 150 Kelley Drive does not allow for an abattoir. The county zoning ordinance doesn't yet include or define abattoir as a type of use allowed by a permit.

But planning department officials already have expressed concerns with the proposed expansion of the Ayreshire Farm facility to include the slaughtering of poultry.

Planning Director Taryn G. Logan states in a July 11 memo that staff has concerns that the property lies adjacent to a proposed commercial shopping center and surrounding uses do not include those similar to a slaughterhouse. While the current request only covers the slaughtering of poultry, Logan expressed concern the use could expand to cows, pigs or other animals. Concerns also include how often the facility would dispose of waste and containment of the smell from processing.

The Economic Development Authority board of directors opposes the request, according to Executive Director Jennifer R. McDonald. She states in a July 3 letter the board fears an animal slaughtering facility "would subvert the intended usage of the park that is zoned for industrial development, and moreover jeopardize its appearance and our ability to effectively market the park to future industrial users." Directors feel a permit could lead to more slaughterhouses operating in the park, McDonald states. Logan also has noted such a permit would open up industrial zones to that use.

"We would ask that the County Planning Commission take a hard look at this application as it may be detrimental to our community in a number of ways," the letter states.

Walden Foods received a conditional-use permit in 1995 to operate a food-processing business at the property, according to Logan. The permit transferred to Ayreshire Farm Management LC in 2010 after the business submitted a request to the county process food raised on their farm in Loudoun County, Logan states. Ayreshite Farm representatives stated in a letter the business intended to bring animals into the building after they are slaughtered and chilled, package the meat which the firm then would sell at their store and/or restaurant in Loudoun County, according to Logan. The operation fit within the food-processing perameters of the conditional use permit.

Now Ayreshire Farm plans to receive and slaughter live poultry, specifically chickens, turkey or other game birds on site at the processing facility, Logan states. They propose to receive the poultry "in fully enclosed, air-conditioned trucks with the live poultry contained in humane standard cages with room to move around," the memo states. Plans call for poultry to be unloaded from the trucks inside the building, avoiding exposure to the outside, according to Logan.

"They continue to state in their statement of justification that the poultry will be handled and slaughtered by humane standards and in accord with USDA requirements," Logan states. "They have stated that there will not be an increase in noise, waste or traffic with the operation of an abattoir."

Representatives for Nonsuch IV LC have requested the county approve and adopt a text amendment to the zoning ordinance which would allow the construction and operation of an abattoir in the industrial district by a conditional-use permit.

The request also includes adding to the zoning ordinance the definition of an abattoir: a place where poultry for consumption is commercially slaughtered and where the meat may be cut, packaged and/or processed. In conjunction with the ordinance addition, Nonesuch has applied for a conditional-use permit which the county would require should officials adopt the ordinance addition.


A poultry operation will invite the EPA to regulate as a violation of the federal Clean Water Act. The EPA has charged a poultry operator in West Virginia with polluting the waters of the United States because its exhaust fans can carry feathers and dander to the outside which can then fall to the ground and if it rains carry the feathers and dander into a culvert which would then carry this water into a stream connecting to a river, hence polluting waters of the United States.

For more on the WVA case, read the blog: “Ventilation Fans: Sources of Water Pollution?” http://farmfutures.com/blogs.aspx/ventilation-fans-sources-water-pollution-3410

Aren't we all ready to say good riddance to the EPA? 22 years and counting. Sayonara.

**cough..AVTEX..cough cough**

I wonder if chicken dander is anything like cat or dog dander? Oh, golly gee, maybe this chicken dander thing is totally innocent and can't harm a flea? I wonder what fleas eat?

Let me be the first to offer to deliver and liberally sprinkle all over your front doorstep a double handful of chicken dander and see how you like it. While you are pondering that, ponder this:

Man-made airborne particulate pollutants identified as causing disease (asthma - cancer - emphysema - heart disease)
· cigarette smoke
· lead (paint - gasoline)
· airborne particulates from burning coal
· oxides of nitrogen (NOx) tailpipe emissions
· silicosis from rock quarry dust
· black lung from coal mining dust
· smog (ground-level ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and lead)
· cloroflourocarbons in aerosol spray cans and R-12 automotive a/c refrigerants

The size of particles is directly linked to their potential for causing health problems. Particles that are 10 micrometers in diameter or smaller generally pass through the throat and nose and enter the lungs. Once inhaled, these particles can affect the heart and lungs and cause serious health effects.

The EPA is not required to re-prove the existence of the atom every time it approaches a scientific question. However, the disagreement over this chicken dander/feather issue will be resolved by the courts deciding current lawsuits in West Virginia and North Carolina.

Is it ethical to favor money in hand versus killing your neighbors with your pollution?

Our rivers are already being polluted from this death business; now you want another slaughterhouse?

When we have no more drinking water, you'll finally learn what the consequences of these inhumane operations have done.

Everyone is so quick to point the finger, blame someone and complain about something. Here is an idea, if you have a problem with a product or how it is produced, DON’T USE IT.. Don’t use electricity and then complain about coal dust, don’t drive your car and complain about tailpipe emissions, don’t use an AC, don’t complain about chicken dander and feathers and then eat chicken. If you do, you are just as much a part of the problem as the rest of us.

It’s the same people who run out and buy a hybrid car and think they are doing the environment a favor, HA. Have any of you hybrid owners ever studied the environmental impacts caused by mining nickel? The nickel used to make those nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries that help you save on gas. Probably not! I’ll save you the time, it’s awful.

I guess ignorance is bliss!!

"They continue to state in their statement of justification that the poultry will be handled and slaughtered by humane standards and in accord with USDA requirements," Logan states. "They have stated that there will not be an increase in noise, waste or traffic with the operation of an abattoir."

On reading Alex Bridges' article I was seriously bothered that there was only a hint of concern for the amount of additional pollution from such a plant that would ultimately find it's way into the Shenandoah River which many of us consider the jewel in our crown so to speak.

The yearly slaughtering of hundreds of thousands, indeed potentially millions, of chickens unavoidable results in a lot of chicken guts, chicken poop, chicken blood, etc. For goodness sake, I hope and trust someone is asking some hard questions and getting some legally binding answers in writing in these proposals that all that stuff is not going to get ground up and given some cursory processing to make it 'acceptable' to be flushed into the Shenandoah River, the Potomac and the Chesapeake Bay.

I have long been a supporter of Friends of the Shenandoah River and hope they are chiming in and represented in these proceedings since they can give professional and scientific input to a complex issue.

Concerned Citizen and Chicken Eater

Spot on Ton Jones!! A few quotable quotes that relate to this new initiative which I fear will soon be approved under the guise of "jobs creation".

“You cannot get the water to clear up until you get the pigs out of the creek.” Anon

‘The more civilization progresses, the greater the violence of nature’s wrath.’ Torahiko Terada, physicist, 1934

"No one gives a damn about how much coal, oil or gas they use - they care about how hot their shower is and how cold their beer." Amory Lovins

"...those in power might try to kill us if we seriously impede their ability to exploit the world — none of which alters the fact that it’s a better option than a dead planet. Any option is a better option than a dead planet. - Derrick Jensen

"Aren't we all ready to say good riddance to the EPA"

Yes, we can't wait to wallow in our own filth. Perhaps we can also get rid of those pesky meddlers at OSHA so we can put the kids back to work in the coal mines. And who needs to protect endangered species when we have plenty of kudzu and snakehead fish?

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