New technology may keep families on farm

COLUMBUS - A new grow-finish hog production barn northeast of Columbus could become a model for boosting incomes on the farm while dispelling neighbors' fears of environmental problems.
calendar icon 2 May 2006
clock icon 2 minute read
Paul and Dave Wilke opened their new 2,000-head, grow-finish barn about 10 miles northeast of Columbus to tours during an open house on Friday, with visitors learning how swine facilities can operate in an environmentally friendly way while revitalizing family farms.

“We wanted to let everybody see first-hand what's going on,'' said Paul Wilke, adding that the $350,000 facility will begin production in about a week. The hog production barn allows the family to expand its agricultural operation and income without adding any farm ground, he said.

Known as “The Nebraska Model,'' facilities such as the Wilkes' barn aim to demonstrate the benefits of hog production to family farms, and local and state economies, while being sensitive to neighbors' concerns over odor, dust and possible groundwater contamination.

The state-of-the art Wilke barn features two 328-feet by 51-feet buildings linked end to end.

Source: Columbus Telegram
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