Intervale Move Casts Doubt on Egg Farm Expansion

03/22/02 12:00AM

(Host) A controversial egg farm in Highgate has lost a key partner for its expansion plans. A coalition of environmental and farm groups announced Wednesday that it would fight the egg farm's plan to add 135,000 birds to its Highgate operation. The group calls the farm a factory food operation.

State approval of the expansion plan hinges on a safe method of disposing of the chicken manure. Fifteen hundred tons of manure were supposed to be composted at a project in Burlington's Intervale area.

But on Wednesday night, the Intervale Foundation decided to withdraw from the egg farm project. David Lane is the Foundation's executive director:

(Lane) "We met, the staff, and decided to actually withdraw our name. The core of the foundation is really the farmer program. It's an incubator program where we're actually providing land machinery and technical assistance to grow new farmers for Vermont. And we did not want to jeopardize their future and the future of the program."

(Host) A lawyer for the egg farm said he had just learned about the Foundation's decision and did not want to comment.

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