Indiana Pork Watching Ag Bill Moving Through Indiana Legislature

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Indiana Pork update

Indiana Senate Bill 476, the grain buyers and warehouse licensing bill, passed the third reading Monday on a 49-0 vote, sending it to the Indiana House for further consideration. Indiana agriculture groups have lobbied for revisions to the state’s grain indemnity and grain buyers and warehouse laws after the closure of Cline Grain in April last year and related issues, uncovered the need for some changes.

Over in the Indiana House pork producers are keeping an eye on Rep. David Wolkins’ House Bill 1494. As Josh Trenary, the Executive Director of Indiana Pork explains, the bill helps with clarifications in the confined feeding operations statute.

“We’re trying to clarify some things with disclosure requirements in permitting and we’re trying to clarify what types of changes to a facility need what type of agency approval. It’s a because it’s tweaking several different details of the statute and it makes it tough to explain. I think if we can clearly convey what the purpose is and if we can make sure that folks know that we’ve worked with IDEM moving through this to get something in front of the legislature that we’ll be ok.”

The newest CFO rule was instituted in 2012 and the need for clarifications emerged after the rule went into effect. At their annual meeting this week, the state’s pork producers heard from the new state administration. Director of the Indiana State Department of Agriculture Ted McKinney is continuing in his role from the Pence years, and Trenary said Indiana Pork was happy to interact with new Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch.

“I think this administration is going to be very supportive of what we’re trying to do here in Indiana and they’re really going to be a big part of our success,” he told HAT. “We’re happy that the ISDA director is the same for sure, and we’re happy that Ted has been doing a good job of getting the Lt. Governor in front of us so we can start explaining our industry to her and make sure she is on the same page with us. That relationship has all been going well.”

Trenary said the national and Indiana landscape will see some significant changes this year when it comes to pork production and processing.

“There is going to be some deck chair shuffling with flows of production. We’ve got the Coldwater, Michigan plant that will be coming online so people will be moving around where they sell pigs, and also new facilities are getting constructed to kind of fill in those gaps, so it’s a pretty interesting time to see everything moving around in the industry. We’ve got a lot of new barns coming online and it’s going to be an exciting time.

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