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COST IS TOO HIGH FOR MOST
Soil Limitations, State Rules Expected To
Cap Industry Here
BY SUSAN USHER
As local farmers look for new
ways to diversify their income, more
swine operations are likely to crop
up in Brunswick County.
However, a local agricultural
agent doesn't think Brunswick
County will ever have enough hog
farms to create problems.
"Corn, soybeans are not good
now Tobacco's the money crop."
said Harold Jones, district conserva
tionist with the U.S. Soil Conser
vation Service "Hogs are another
way to diversify, to keep from losing
your pants farming."
But raising swine is a gamble like
any other kind of farming, he says,
with its high front-end costs plus in
herent risks of disease.
"Folks are having to spend SI
million to SI.5 million to put in a
hog operation. You take 20.0(H) hogs
and you lose $1 a hog. that's
SZO.OtMl you've lost.
"It's a business, a big business."
Pork is a $900 million industry in
North Carolina, the nation's fourth
largest producer. The state's Pork
Producers Association estimates
there are about 8.000 hog tarms
across North Carolina.
Brunswick County Agricultural
Extension Director Milton Coleman
said he is not sure how many Bruns
wick County farms have hogs today,
hut in 1989 he tested hogs for pseu
do rabies on 252 farms, of which
about I It) had a "sizeable number."
Presently the largest numbers in
terms of briHKl sows and litter pro
duction runs around 3.600. up from
2.9(H) in 1988 at Wilbur and Mary
L:arp's Funston Farms.
"We're not like some other coun
ties." said Coleman
All existing large livestock opera
tions with on-site wastewater dis
posal hail to register by Dec. 31 with
the N C. Division ot Environmental
Management (DhM). An operation
is considered large if it has i00 cat
OPPONENTS: THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD?
Diversity Said Key To Keeping Family Farm
One local farmer looking to diversity his operation to hold on to the family farm, with no intentions of
through swine production met "there s g?x:s the neigh- hurting the quality of life in the community where he
borhood" resistance within his Grissettown communi- and his family live.
ty last year "We've had a family farm here since the early
Some of Malcolm Grissett's neighbors and kins- I'XMK. four generations," he said. "We try to do a good
men were convinced that any job with what we do. We've had to work off the farm
hog operation automatically because it wouldn't support us."
meant problems with unpleasant While he has farmed part-time while working full
odors and groundwater contami- J time for Atlantic Telephone Membership Corp. as out
nation. ml Jk s'^c P';,nl manager. Grissett has a son. James, whose
In July, a cousin. Oncal Gris- "heart and desire is to farm".
set!, who also farms in the W' ?, i A farrow-to-weaning swine operation could help
Grissettown area, presented a pe- provide the income to make that possible.
tilion on hehalt of fellow signers "\? i Grissett is convinced that current technology
askini: Brunswick Countv ^ means it can be done without harm to the environment
Commissioners to adopt local [| and without being a nuisance to the neighborhood, and
hog parlor regulations more (jRissrtT that fears to the contrary are unwarranted.
stringent than those of the state "I simply don't think people are acquainted with
and the U.S. Soil Conservation Service, similar to the new technology." he said. "1 think fear comes to
those adopted by most other counties in the state. people by not knowing.
Otherwise, he wrote. "This could become a green "I'm just a farmer trying to live by the rules. The
light for the large hog conglomerates. As I write, plans question for me is 'What is really fair for Malcolm
have been laid to make the residents of the Grissett?" If I don't make changes will our family farm
Grissettown Community neighbors to one of these fa- service another generation?
cililies." "Brunswick County farmers work hard at what
Commissioners took no action on the petition. they do and do a good job. I want to protect that her
Meanwhile. Malcolm Grissett says he's just trying itage and pass it on."
"We've probably talked more people out
of it than
?Harold Jones District Conservationist
lie, 75 horses, 250 hogs or l.(KK)
sheep, or in the case of poultry
farms, 30,000 or more birds and a
liquid waste system rather than the
more common drv litter.
As of Dec. 2<). 2.100 farms had
registered, with 1.200 entered so far
on a computer database. Of those,
only four, all swine operations, are
located in Brunswick County.
"There could he more." said Rick
Shiver of the Wilmington Regional
DEM office. "They expect to have
the rest of the registrations on the
computer hv the end of February."
In addition, after Jan. 1. new or
expanding farms must file waste
management plans. Established
farms have three years, until IW7.
to file their plans. Their plans must
comply with new rules governing
waste sprayed on fields and siting
and construction of waste settling la
goons. The land set aside for spray
irrigation must be sufficient to han
dle the entire volume of waste gen
erated by the livestock operation.
By Jones's estimation, there's lit
tle chance Brunswick County \vill
ever have as high a concentration of
swine operations as some other
southeastern North Carolina coun
ties. even with the opening of a pro
cessing facility in nearby Bladen
Of the first nine requests his of
fice received in 1903 to check po
tential sites, only two farmers had
"We have spent ;? half day digging
holes trying to find a suitable site."
With its high water table and pre
dominantly sandy soils. Jones said
he doesn't see swine production
"I anticipate the number (of hog
operations) will increase, but their
location. I don't know." he said. "I
don't see it becoming a problem as
it has in some other counties, mainly
because of the soil situation."
"We have folks who have backed
off. We've probably talked more
people out of it than anything else."
Land plays a tremendous role in
the feasibility of a hog operation. A
farm has to have enough land for
on-site treatment of all wastewater
generated by the operation, while
maintaining required distances from
any body of water, and from houses
and other structures.
Generally the treatment system
consists of one or more settling/stor
age lagoons and fields for spray irri
gation. How much land is required
and the type(s) of crops to be grown
Southport Man Killed When He Steps Into Path Of Car
A Southport pedestrian w as killed
last Tuesday evening. Dec. 28. at ap
proximately 7:25 p.m. when struck
bv a car as he was crossing l^ing
Curtis Thomas l^ong. 66, was
standing in the turn lane and then
stepped into the path of a north
bound 1989 Mercury, the car's dri
ver. kier Skipper. 27. told N.C.
Highway Patrolman J.V. Dove.
No charges were filed. Both
Skipper and his passenger. Anh-Dao
Lang. 22. both of Long Beach, com
plained of injuries.
Damages to the Mercury were es
timated at S<)(HI.
Two drivers were charged in sep
arate accidents on New Year's Day,
Anthony Scott. Rabon. IH, of
Winnabow. was chaiged wilh dri
ving while impaired following a
one-car wreck that occurred at ap
proximately II a.m. six miles south
of Leland on Tovsn Creek Road
Rabon was taken to New Hanover
Regional Medical Center in
Wilmington for treatment of serious,
Trooper D.A. lu;wis reported
Rabon was driving east in a 198S
Ford pickup at a high rate of speed
when he lost control of the vehicle.
The truck ran ofl the lett shoulder of
the road, back onto the roadway, off
the right shoulder and b:>ck onto the
road and started skidding sideways.
The Iruck continued off the left
shoulder and struck lirst a telephone
junction box. then u ditch hank,
overturned and came to rest upside
down on the shoulder. Ration was
thrown from the vehicle, coming to
rest in the eastbound lane of traffic.
Damage to the truck was estimat
No serious injuries were reported
following a three-car wreck that
happened at 9:20 p.m. two miles
east of Shallotte on N.C 130.
Christy Moore, 25. of Shallotte
was traveling east on N.C. 130 when
she s'opped her 1986 Oldsmobile to
make a left-hand turn into a private
Dannielle Bellinger. 23, of Sup
ply. was also eastbound anil came to
a stop in her 1985 Chevrolet behind
Donald White. IS. of Supply, dri
ving a 14>88 Ford, wasn't able to
stop, and his Ford struck Bettinger's
car, which in turn struck Moore's
White was charged by Trooper
W.H. Thompson with failure to re
Brent Moore, 27, of Shallottc. a
passenger in Moore's car, Bettinger
and White reported complaints of
injury but were not transported for
Damages were estimated at
S2.XIMI to White's Ford, S2.<HH> to
Bettinger's Chevrolet and Sl(K) to
Leland Man Killed, Wife Hurt In New Year's Fire
A 46-vcar-old I x l and woman re
mained in serious condition Tuesday
at a Chapel Hill hospital where she
is being treated for inhalation burns
suffered in the New Year's Day fire
that killed her husband, a sheriff's
Ma/el Southerland told investiga
tors thai she tried to drag her hus
band George. 67. out of their smoke
filled house on McKoy Trail alter he
was overcome fumes and collapsed
early Saturday morning.
"He told his wife he was too big
!'.! pa!! out of the house and ioid her
to leave him and t;<_-i Bruns
wick County Sheriffs Deputy Mark
Snowden reported after speaking
with hei following the incident. "Mr
Southerland stayed in the lire and
Mrs. Southerland told Snowden
thai her husband gol up at around 6
a.m. "to stoke the lire." then wenl
back to bed. About a halt hour later
she said they awoke to find the room
tull of smoke.
Southerland reportedly stood up
and immediately fell down choking,
the report said. Mis body was found
lying in the bed. Sheriff's Detective
Gene Caison said.
Investigators believe that when
Southerland got up to stoke the fire,
he may have knocked sparks or a
burning ember onto the floor. It ap
parently smoldered long enough to
ignite the blaze thai destroyed their
small wood frame house in the
Phoenix community, where he occa
sionally preached at the nearby
Summerville AMI- /ion Church
The house w.ts "fully involved" in
flames when Snowden arrived min
utes after the 911 call came in at
6:41. Firefighters from Leland.
Northwest, Navassa and Winnabow
responded and contained the blaze.
bul were unable to save the house.
Caison said the house was con
structed of old "fat lighter" lumber,
which burns quickly and is difficult
to extinguish when it catches fire.
Coast Guard Assists One Of Her
Own In Quiet Holiday Season
The U.S. Coast Guard Station at
Oak Island enjoyed a largely un
eventful holiday season, with only
one rescue effort launched since
( hristmas. station chief UMC'S J.D.
Arndt reported Tuesday.
Sunday afternoon at about 5 p.m.,
the station received a call from the
sailing vessei "Julie Ann," reporting
itself disabled in the vicinity of
Frying Pan Shoals Buoy 4. Arnd!
The boat identified itself as a U.S.
Coasl Guard Auxiliary vessel, au
thorizing it to receive ("oast Guard
?u . i. ?? llm.. ? I. . .. . I
u ttiiivv ut uii t iiliiw. inw v ? 11 v i .nun.
The station launched its 41-loot
patrol boat, which located the "Julie
Ann" and lowed it to the nearest
safe mooring, at Southport Marina.
The Sliallotte Moose Lodge
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on ii depends on the soil type and
It the soil is unsuitable for a waste
lagoon, then it must lx- sealed with a
clay or plastic liner. For most, said
Jones, that generally makes the cost
The lagoon must he big enough to
store the waste plus the maximum
24-hour rainfall that could occur in
this area, about 8 inches.
For anyone who does venture into
the business, guidance through the
maze of regulations is available, and
in most cases, required.
"If you are well-heeled financially
you can go out on your own without
the advice or help of the Agri
cultural Soil and Conservation Ser
vice or Agriculture Extension." said
Jones. "But in the financial commu
nity. if a farmer needs a loan, most
institutions require use of ASCS."
Jones has to sign off on the plans
And before doing so he makes sure
the farmer will be in compliance.
"Very few people realize how
specific we are," he said.
Two major concerns are fecal col
iform and nitrogen, because they
leach easily into water. When that
leachate reaches the coast, areas are
closed to shellfishing.
While environmental organiza
tions across the state had pushed for
even stronger regulations, James
Cummings. Best Management Prac
tices program coordinator for the
N.C. Soil and Water Conservation
Service, says that "if managed prop
erly. the new systems shou'd reduce
almost all the concerns regarding
However, he said there still will
be "some odor." particular at certain
Most lagoons are designed to be
pumped out every I.SI) days or so. In
the fall the effluent is usually
sprayed as fertilizer for winter
wheat, and in spring, coastal Ber
muda urass. because it absorbs nitro
gen at such a liign rate.
Typically there is little obvious
odor noticeable around a properly
functioning system, and most la
goons ;ne "over-designed lo handle
more than their anticipated maxi
However. Jones said that it a la
goon has been designed to serve a
certain size of operation anil the
farmer expands his operation with
out upgrading the lagoon, it can
Odor can also be more noticeable
in two other situations: when efflu
ent is being sprayed on the fields un
der certain environmental condi
tions. and at the onset of warm
weather, when anaerobic action may
increase in the lagoon and bubbles
break to the surface of the rusty
brown liquid that signals a working
Most hog growers work with one
of the 15 or 17 "integrators" in busi
ness in southeastern North Carolina
At least five, maybe more, have con
tracts with local farms.
An integrator such as Preslage
Farms. Carroll Foods. Murphy's.
Brown's of Carolina. Moore's or
Purina shares some of the risk of the
contract farmer and provides consul
tation and services such as automat
ed record-keeping. The integrator al
so offer incentives for efficiency,
and may cancel contracts if its oper
ating standards aren't maintained.
Some integrators are more restric
tive than the state, said Jones, re
quiring 2.(H)0 yards distances from
churches, for example, instead of a
Coleman said three general types
of contracts are available: raising a
sow herd to weaning size, about 40
to 50 pounds; grow-out with a feed
ing lloor, from weaning to market
size: and nursery, birth to three
Some farmers operate more tradi
tionally and "do it all."
Immigration Rules Hinder Effort To
Contact Dead Man's Family In Mexico
Brunswick authorities on Tuesday
continued their efforts to contact the
family of ;i 37-year-old Mexican im
migrant whose body was found
floating in the Cape Fear River on
New Years Day. Sheriff 's Detective
Gene Caison said.
The body of Felix Castor Avaloz
had been in the water for about three
weeks when it was apparently
nudged to the surface by a passing
dredge shortly alter noon Saturday,
Caison said. Preliminary autopsy re
sults indicate that Avaioz died of ac
We don't teei there was any foul
play involved." Caison said. "He
was still wearing a gold wedding
band, and his wallet was still in his
back pocket with money inside."
Also in the wallet were an immi
gration card and other identification
listing an address on Red Cross
Street. Wilmington. Recently, Ava
loz has been has been staying at the
Good Shepherd home in Wilm
ington and doing odd jobs, mostly in
landscaping. Caison said.
Although Avaloz is a legal resi
dent of the US hi> h:>s no known
relatives in the area. Caison said.
His family is believed to reside in
Guadalajara. Mexico. But efforts to
learn their exact whereabouts have
been hampered by regulations that
prohibit the U.S. Immigration and
Naturalization Service to release in
formation about immigrants.
An early report that Avaloz had
relatives in Ivanhoe could not be
substantiated after calls to a tele
phone listing there revealed that the
phone had been disconnected. Cai
Auto Accidents Disability Job Injuries
ARE YOU A I LARD WORKER NOW INJURED OR DISABLED?
Kathleen Shannon Glancy
Attorney at Law
114 S. Front St., Wilmington, NC
LET ME WORK I LARD FOR YOU TO OBTAIN FAIR AND
REASONABLE COMPENSATION FOR YOUR INJURIES
Pursuant to the provisions of N C.G.S. 160A-269, an otfer to
purchase Lot 584 and Lot 585, Section 9, Plat 7/38, Boiling Spring
Lakes has been upset. The upset bid is in the amount of
$1,420.30. Within ten days from the date hereof any person may
raise the bid by not less than ten percent of the first one thousand
dollars and five percent of the remainder. Any upset bid must be
deposited with the Clerk to the Board of Commissioners. The
Board of Commissioners may at any time reject any and all bids.
This the 6th day of January 199^.
BrunswicK County Board of Commissioners
Joyce C. Johnson, Interim Clerk to the Board
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