Kinnard Farm reaches settlement with Wisconsin DNR
The rotary parlor at Kinnard Farms
A Wisconsin farm that sued the state’s Department of Natural Resources over additional water quality testing has decided to settle the case instead of fully pursuing a court decision.
Kinnard Farms near Casco in northeast Wisconsin argued it should not be required to conduct additional water quality tests near fields where they have spread manure. The additional requirement in their concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) permit came after the State Supreme Court ruled in favor of the environmental group Clean Wisconsin, which took the DNR to court saying they had the authority to require additional water testing near large farms.
In a statement issued Friday, spokesman Lee Kinnard said, “For the sake of our family, our fifth-generation dairy and crop farming business, and our relationship with the DNR, we decided it is time to move forward with a settlement, avoiding a lengthy and costly dispute. Our family remains committed to working constructively with regulatory agencies as we continue our use of science-based practices to produce nutritious food while also being highly protective of our precious water and soil resources, our cows and our community. We continue to innovate daily through our use of climate-smart practices. Our family prides itself on being a leader in regenerative agriculture. For decades, we have utilized practices such as cover cropping to build healthy soil and no-till planting to reduce erosion, and have incorporated industry-leading sand and water recycling technology, as well as a system that allows for the production of renewable natural gas. We look forward to pursuing state-of-the-art manure management technology that will allow our family to remain on the cutting edge of conservation and further protect and improve water quality.”
Kinnard Farms has about 8,000 dairy cows and produces milk, crops, and renewable natural gas from manure.