South Dakota Governor Dennis Dugaard’s support of livestock growth in the state is encouraging to those in the industry. Luke Minion CEO of Pipestone Vet Clinic has been part of recent efforts to site pork production facilities in areas like Mitchell which have experienced opposition. He says South Dakota has not endorsed the idea that big isn’t bad and so the Governor’s leadership is important. However, he would also like to see livestock-friendly county designation’s similar to Nebraska.
Minion says beyond that South Dakota’s zoning process need to be improved. That doesn’t imply state permitting like in Iowa, but he says there is not enough sound science used by zoning boards.
Minion says there also needs to be a more unified effort across the entire ag industry in South Dakota. Often hog expansion is opposed by grain and even cattle producers, which needs to be changed.