- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 19, 2016

PARKER, S.D. (AP) - Officials in Turner County have approved an egg farm that will house up to 2.5 million chickens in cage-free barns.

The county’s Board of Adjustment on Tuesday unanimously approved the project that will be located near Parker.

The approval for the project proposed by Sioux Falls-based Sonstegard Foods comes with several requirements, including a disposal plan for potential bird-flu losses without composting carcasses and a promise to maintain odor and fly control measures.

The company had initially proposed a 6 million-bird operation. It sparked controversy and a lawsuit against the county and the company.

Some area residents still oppose the pared-down chicken farm, fearing harm to human health, the environment and property values.

The company still has to secure a permit from the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

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