Moratorium placed on new Oklahoma poultry feeding operations

TULSA, Okla. – The Oklahoma Board of Agriculture has temporarily halted processing new registrations for poultry feeding operations.

The Tulsa World reports that the moratorium announcement comes about a week after the first meeting of the Coordinating Council on Poultry Growth. Gov. Mary Fallin and Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker announced the creation of the council last month to address residents’ concerns.

Residents say they’re worried about how the increase of new chicken houses will impact water quality and supply, property values, road maintenance and air quality.

Secretary of Agriculture Jim Reese says officials expect to resolve some of the issues and begin taking registrations again shortly. He says the moratorium will allow officials to ensure the poultry industry has more structured growth.

“At the present time, there is only one application pending,” Secretary Reese said. “Therefore we find it timely to pause and temporarily suspend accepting applications. The board intends to take into consideration the work of the Coordinating Council on poultry growth and determine if a more structured plan can accommodate neighbors, communities, and the poultry industry. ODAFF is supportive of the poultry industry and its expansion, we hope this pause allows for discussions to avoid yet another ‘boom and bust’ impact that Oklahoma knows so well.”