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Minnesota farm groups seek changes to “manure bill”

Several farm groups are asking the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to reconsider shortening the timeframe to apply manure.

Minnesota Milk director Lucas Sjostrum tells Brownfield new permitting rules would ban the roughly 1,200 farms in Minnesota that have more than 1,000 animal units from spreading manure in March.  The rule would also prohibit manure applications from October 1st  to the 14th without cover crops or nitrogen inhibitors.

“Which, at that time of the year, very well might not help. It would just be a huge cost that time of year depending on the weather. So we’re asking them to focus on the weather and not so much on the calendar.”

Minnesota Pork CEO David Preisler says once October hits, farmers should “just be able to go.”

“Our window to apply manure in Minnesota, and do it in a good way, is pretty narrow. So we really believe that the science is on our side from the standpoint of October applications, and we should be able to just go ahead and do that.”

Sjostrum says the Senate Ag Committee supports giving farmers more time and he’s hopeful the Pollution Control Agency will negotiate a better bill that makes sense for the wide geography of Minnesota.

Lucas Sjostrum interview:

David Preisler interview:

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