The UK justice ministry is to oppose a planning application for an industrial pig unit housing 25,000 animals directly opposite a women’s prison. The news has been welcomed by local residents in the Derbyshire village of Foston, who have been campaigning for four years to stop the project, which would involve building livestock accommodation within 100 metres of existing housing.
Dutch and US guidelines recommend a separation of between 250m and 1km between livestock units and residential housing. Apart from the obvious environmental issues, intensive livestock units on this scale are a potential source of airborne antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Dutch government scientific advice warns of the risks attached to finely divided particulates in the immediate vicinity of intensive livestock housing.
The justice ministry is planning to close female prisons in Yorkshire and Kent, which will involve the setting up of a specialist unit and transferring vulnerable women to Foston. The establishment will take on a resettlement role, with extensive investment in medical facilities.
A source close to the prison told campaigners at Farms Not Factories: “The planned size of this farm in such close proximity to a large community of often very vulnerable women with complex health issues cannot now in any way be ignored. I do not see how the Derbyshire County Council can fail to recognise the feelings of the Ministry of Justice, local residents and campaigners in their final decision.”
Speaking for Foston Community Forum, local resident Jim Davies declared: “We are incredibly pleased that the Ministry of Justice has taken on board the concerns we have been raising for four years now. A facility of this size and nature is an industrial site. Clearly it is not appropriate for it be located within 100m of anyone – but particularly not vulnerable female prisoners, who would be unable to move away. Derbyshire County Council must recognise what we all know to be unacceptable and deny planning permission.”
ARC2020 has been very busy on the intensive pig front in recent months, here on the site and on the ground.
Our previous action: Wietze
Our next action: January 18th Berlin
A successful campaign we highlighted opposing an intensive pig farm
Jochen Fritz on the The Business of Pigs