Support for Chicken Mega-Farms at State Fair Poultry Exhibit - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Support for Chicken Mega-Farms at State Fair Poultry Exhibit

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HARRINGTON, Del. (WBOC) - The people running the Delaware State Fair's poultry exhibit are expressing their support for the a huge chicken operation approved for southern Kent County.

The project is unprecedented in its size and scope. That's got neighbors of these planned operations upset. They're concerned about smell, property values, road safety and water quality concerns.

But the people WBOC spoke with Thursday say this will be good for the poultry industry on Delmarva.

Mike Wasylkowski is the superintendent of the poultry department at the fair. He's had chickens since he was 5.

"Chicken houses are a part of life here in Delaware - in Kent County, in Sussex County," he said.

Despite that, county leaders have wondered if the operations planned are a game changer.

Delaware's Agriculture sec. Ed Kee told WBOC this week they might be the largest he's seen. There could be as many as 30 chicken houses on two separately-owned sites in a small part of Farmington.

"It's easy to look at one thing - there's going to be all these birds concentrated in one area," Wasylkowski said. "But if you look at the overall picture, it's a good thing."

"I think it's going to be a good idea, because it will keep the chickens here," said Sandra Evans, assistant superintendent of the poultry department.

Sec. Kee says operations this large are an anomaly.

"They're happening almost as a fluke or coincidence," he said. "I don't think we're going to see much more of us."

Wasylkowski isn't so sure.

"If I were to make a guess - and this is a guess - I'd guess that's probably the future for the poultry industry."

And he believes that's a good thing for the industry.

County leaders say the projects have gone through the required approval process. They are going ahead.


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