Our hats should go off to New Fashion Park for taking the lead in improving the environmental quality in its new facility northwest of Armstrong.
Jay Moore of New Fashion Pork introduced John and Matt Baumgartner of Baumgartner Environics to the Emmet County Board of Supervisors Tuesday. The Baumgartners demonstrated a unique emission control device that reduces airborne dust on animal confinements. First used in the cement industry to collect fly ash, the Baumgartners use the technology to improve air quality inside animal confinements - in addition to reducing odors emitted by confinements into the environment.
As the Baumgartners said, it's really a win-win. At a cost of $1.75 a square foot, the system puts negative ions into the air space which magnetizes particles which are then collected, reducing pathogens, gases and odors.
In addition to improving the environment outside confinements. the device improves animal weight of gain rates.
"We've been around the world with this technology, had it looked at by a number of clients," said John Baumgartner. "It's become a very important production tool."
Matt Baumgartner said their company, BEI, is installing the technology in 1,000 barns for Murphy-Brown, LLC and Moore said it's being installed at New Fashion Pork's site on 520th Avenue four and a half miles northwest of Armstrong.
"We feel it's a win-win for both sides," Matt Baumgartner said of both producers and their neighbors.
It's great to see a company like New Fashion Pork taking a leadership role in improving environmental quality - both as a good neighbor and in producing a better quality pork.
This is a step New Fashion has taken on its own - there was no matrix, no county board of supervisors, no petition by neighbors to make them do it. They did it because they want to do the right thing.
And for that we should thank them.