New hog facility opens up near Meredosia

By Gary Scott on September 3, 2015 at 7:24am

They’re squealing with delight about a new hog farm that’s opening in northwestern Morgan County.

An open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the Six family hog farm south of the Meredosia Hill Prairie Nature Reserve on Arenzville Road last night.

The event was hosted by the Illinois Pork Producers Association, the Maschhoff hog-farming family and Griggsville-based Longhorn Cattle and Swine Confinement. The barn is owned by Six Farms LLC, which is partnering with the Carlyle-based Maschhoffs to run the 1,860-unit feeder-to-finish barn.

The farm will add to the nearly 9 million dollars in existing economic activity for Morgan County, according to Nick Anderson with the Illinois Livestock Development Group.

“Morgan County is going to feed a lot of people from its resources here at this farm, so it’s really vital to rural America for jobs and infrastructure that these types of farms exist,” he says. “The market drives why pork production is in place, because the market demands a certain product, and then it goes to who can raise it the best way, and we found a way to do that in Illinois,” continues Anderson

Tim Maiers, the public relations director for the Illinois Pork Producers, notes there’s already an economic pork presence in the area with places like the Cargill plant in Beardstown. He says improved pork industry technology is on display at the new Six hog barn.

“The care for the animals is so much better than what we had years ago, where we had pigs outside and they changed when the temperature changed in harsh winters. This barn, the way it’s set up, there’s automatic feeders, automatic water, and just for the workers to care for the pigs, it’s set up in a way where they can definitely care for these pigs,” says Maiers.

“The ventilation system and the air temperature, there’s a lot of things we’ve done to improve pig welfare, which we know translates to food safety and good quality pork.”

The building is expected to hold about 4,600 pigs.

This is the second Maschhoff-affiliated farm to open within a year in Morgan County, as a barn was finished in Waverly last September.

You can hear the full interview with Anderson and Maiers by clicking below: