Debate Continues Over Missouri's "Ag Gag" Bill

3 years 11 months 2 weeks ago May 11, 2013 May 11, 2013 Saturday, May 11 2013 Saturday, May 11, 2013 4:44:00 PM CDT in News
By: India Everett
loading

COLUMBIA - Several states around the country brought up "Ag Gag" bills in recent months, which resparked debate over Missouri's "Ag Gag" bill.

An "Ag Gag" law is instituted to prevent the making of video or audio recordings and photographs that might hurt agricultural industries. 

Governor Nixon signed Senate Bill 631 into law last May. The bill limits the ability to record video or audio inside Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations, or CAFOs. A CAFO is a farm that holds 1,000 or more animal units, where an animal unit is considered equal to one mature beef animal (or four hogs equals one mature beef animal).

CAFOs are common throughout Missouri, but they remain a source of controversy.

Don Nikodim, Executive Director of the Missouri Pork Association, said CAFOs have an unfair reputation. He said CAFOs are simply farms that have "advanced [their] technology to feed lots of hungry people."

He said animal industry operations like CAFOs are necessary because farmers "can't feed everyone off back yard gardens anymore."

Contrary to many animal rights activisits' claims, former CAFO owner and former president of the Missouri Beef Association Mark Mahnken said most CAFOs in the Missouri beef industry do not promote cruelty to animals.

"The cattlemen that I've seen and I've worked with here in Missouri are the best caretakers of beef in the world. It's to their advantage not to mistreat the animals," Mahnken said.

Mahnken now owns Missouri Legacy Beef, which is a free range operation and not a CAFO. Free range operations allow livestock to roam and graze naturally instead of keeping the animals confined to feedhouses. He said he made the switch because there is a market demand in Columbia for free range meat. 

"There are consumers who recognize there's a little bit of a difference between free range beef and a confined animal. I'm not saying one's good and the others bad, but we did it primarly because we feel there's an opportunity for us there in that market place," Mahnken said.

Opponents of CAFOs believe the feedhouses constrict animals and are still inhumane.

"You simply can't handle this many animals in this impersonal of a way before they become inanimate objects," Dr. John Ikerd professor emeritus of Agricultural Economics at MU said. "You disassociate with something as being a living being."

Ikerd believes prohibiting recording with "Ag Gag" bills will prevent the general public from seeing treatment of animals they may not tolerate. He said he sees these bills as possible expressions of fear on the part of industrial agriculture.

One of the main drives to pass "Ag Gag" bills is to protect profitable industrial agriculture business. Nikodim said CAFOs provide good jobs in rural areas and are economically efficient in meeting America's food demands, and therefore need protection. He said these kinds of operations are necessary to keep supermarkets stocked with good-quality, safe meat.

But Ikerd argues industrialized operations like CAFOs may actually reduce the number of rural jobs. He said making these operations economically efficient comes at the price of reductions in the cost of labor.

 "Fewer people are producing more product," Ikerd said.

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Gov. Eric Greitens has bought a lakeside house in a resort community west of St. Louis.... More >>
1 hour ago April 29, 2017 Apr 29, 2017 Saturday, April 29 2017 Saturday, April 29, 2017 9:14:38 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The maternal grandmother of a 7-year-old Kansas boy whose remains were found in a pigsty... More >>
1 hour ago April 29, 2017 Apr 29, 2017 Saturday, April 29 2017 Saturday, April 29, 2017 9:09:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - A free carnival-style event Saturday aims to combine fun with education about childhood safety and accident prevention. The... More >>
3 hours ago April 29, 2017 Apr 29, 2017 Saturday, April 29 2017 Saturday, April 29, 2017 7:44:00 AM CDT in News
FULTON – Equestrian students at William Woods University have the unique opportunity to learn from a living legend April 28-30.... More >>
4 hours ago April 29, 2017 Apr 29, 2017 Saturday, April 29 2017 Saturday, April 29, 2017 5:53:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - According to a Columbia Police Department press release, officers arrested a suspect wanted by the St. Louis Police... More >>
6 hours ago April 29, 2017 Apr 29, 2017 Saturday, April 29 2017 Saturday, April 29, 2017 4:12:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Close to 25 environmental activists from mid-Missouri boarded a bus bound for Washington, D.C. Friday afternoon headed to... More >>
15 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 7:35:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The Missouri Department of Public Safety is preparing to respond to potential dangerous flooding in the forecast beginning... More >>
15 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 7:20:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - As prom season begins, the Jefferson City Police Department will start sending out more officers to monitor... More >>
15 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 7:01:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Fatal accidents involving drugged driving have surpassed those involving drunk driving, according to a new study from... More >>
17 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 5:36:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Thousands of workers in St. Louis are preparing to see a jump in pay now that... More >>
18 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 4:27:00 PM CDT in News
FULTON - Autopsy results confirmed the body found by the Fulton Police Department Monday is 31-year-old Carl L. DeBrodie, the... More >>
18 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 3:51:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Some Columbia utility customers are complaining because of recent past due notices sent out for the month of... More >>
19 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 3:29:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Lincoln University’s Board of Curators announced Thursday it will suspend tenure and earned advancements for its faculty.... More >>
19 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 3:24:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Four teenagers were taken to the hospital Friday morning following a vehicle crash on I-70, according to the... More >>
19 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 2:58:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – Music enhances and develops the life of 20-year-old Nathan Walton on a daily basis. "I play a... More >>
20 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 2:01:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – Missouri Task Force 1 sent a team to Southern Missouri to help with the possible flooding in the... More >>
20 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 2:01:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The UM System Board of Curators approved amendments to the University of Missouri-Columbia's collected rules governing faculty standards... More >>
21 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 1:32:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The pollen count in Missouri is the highest it has been in ten years, but that might not... More >>
21 hours ago April 28, 2017 Apr 28, 2017 Friday, April 28 2017 Friday, April 28, 2017 1:23:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 57°
11am 58°
12pm 58°
1pm 58°
2pm 57°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

10:30a
Wilderness Vet
11:00a
Journey with Dylan Dreyer
11:30a
English Premier League Soccer
10:30a
Vacation Creation
11:00a
Save to Win
11:30a
Unlikely Animal Friends

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
2017 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld