Kohlnhofers: Withdraw Your Factory Farm Proposal; Our Community's Health is at Risk

NOTE: On Thursday, Sept. 14, Land Stewardship Project members from Goodhue County’s Zumbrota Township in southeastern Minnesota released a report entitled, “A Community at Risk: A Report on Citizens’ Hydrogen Sulfide Monitoring at Kohlnhofer Factory Hog Farms in Goodhue County, Minn.” The report documented the results of hydrogen sulfide emissions monitoring at six hog facilities owned by the Kohlnhofers in the area. The Kohlnhofers are proposing building a 4,700-head facility in Zumbrota Township, even though the citizen monitoring has shown that their current facilities may be emitting dangerous levels of hydrogen sulfide. Farmers and rural residents held a press conference to release the report and call for immediate action to protect public health. During the press conference, Land Stewardship Project farmer-member Dale Post shared the following statement:

My name is Dale Post. I’m a farmer from Zumbrota Township. My family has lived in Zumbrota
Township for seven generations, and I’m fighting to keep our home safe and healthy, not just for myself, but for generations to come.

My great-grandparents immigrated from Germany in 1883, looking for a better life, which they found, and which we’ve enjoyed up until now. We’re in danger of losing it because of factory farms.

My neighbors and I have spent our free time this summer monitoring for hydrogen sulfide at the property boundary of existing Kohlnhofer factory farms in Goodhue County. We’ve gotten up early, stayed up late, and taken time off of work. What we found is deeply concerning. The Kohlnhofers claim to be model operators, but that’s not the case.

We know that the Kohlnhofers’ proposal for a 4,700-hog factory farm in our township will not be safe for our community. You’ve heard about the health impacts of hydrogen sulfide. These are especially concerning to my family.

My granddaughter, who lives in Zumbrota Township, suffers from a rare genetic disorder called CDKL5. She relies on fresh, clean air, and proximity to a factory hog farm, with high levels of hydrogen sulfide, would greatly complicate her condition.

Her genetic footprint in this township goes back 134 years. Why should she be the one who has to leave?

Our township is a place where family farms can thrive. We have clean air and clean water. We will not let the Kohlnhofers put our farms, our families or our community in jeopardy. We’re calling for the Kohlnhofers to withdraw their Zumbrota Township proposal. Our community’s health is at risk.