Boyden ag business commits offenses

Farmers Feed & Supply Inc. of Boyden is in trouble with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. The company was found to have violated some air quality standards; however, it is cooperating with the DNR.

BOYDEN—An agricultural business in Boyden is in trouble with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

Farmers Feed & Supply Inc. and the DNR entered into an administrative consent order Sept. 4 for the purpose of resolving air quality violations at the business.

A consent order indicates the DNR has voluntarily entered into a legally enforceable agreement with the other party.

According to the DNR’s seven-page order, Farmers Feed & Supply, located at 602 Main St., has been required to:

  • Cease all construction and testing activities for new premix equipment until air quality construction permits are issued.
  • Cease operations of any unpermitted equipment at its facility within 45 days of air quality construction permits being issued.
  • Provide initial National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants subpart 7D notifications to the DNR.
  • Pay a $4,500 administrative penalty to the DNR.

Farmers Feed & Supply, which is part of the Sioux Nation Ag Center based in Sioux Falls, SD, is a premix facility for animal feed. Its operations include blending and packaging animal feed ingredients.

According to the state agency’s order, DNR environmental specialist Amber Wolf observed new construction occurring at the business while she was driving through Boyden on March 15.

She requested information from Farmers Feed & Supply about the new construction and spoke with Darren DeGroot, the business’ plant manager, on March 18.

DeGroot said he was unaware the facility needed air quality construction permits and informed Wolf that new premix equipment was being installed at the business.

Wolf and DNR Air Quality Bureau environmental engineer Rachel Quill met with facility personnel and the construction contractor on March 25.

Construction of the facility’s new premix equipment has been completed.

Wolf and Quill also determined the emission points and units in use at Farmers Feed & Supply were constructed without the business first applying for and obtaining required air quality construction permits.

They found the facility has been operating for several decades without the required air quality construction permits.

The original building and plant construction took place before 1970, before today’s permitting requirements.

However, plant modifications and equipment changes and replacements have occurred as needed since that time.

According to the DNR, the facility has failed since at least 2014 to comply with the requirements contained in subpart 7D. The plant adds ingredients containing manganese above the threshold set in subpart 7D.

Farmers Feed & Supply has failed to submit the required subpart 7D initial notification and notification of compliance status for its operating equipment.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s list of hazardous air pollutants includes specific compounds that are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects.