The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency administers rules regulating livestock feedlots in Minnesota.East Polk SWCD is the delegated feedlot contact responsible for administering and implementing the feedlot program in Polk County.
The feedlot rule (Minnesota Rules Chapter 7020) regulates the collection, transportation, storage, processing and disposal of animal manure and livestock processing activities, and provides assistance to counties and the livestock industry. The rules apply to all aspects of livestock production areas including the location, design, construction, operation and management of feedlots, feed storage, storm water runoff and manure handling facilities. Feedlot staff work in the areas of land application of manure, permitting, data management, technical assistance, and compliance with feedlot rules.
There are two primary concerns about feedlots in protecting water in our agricultural areas:
-Ensuring that manure on a feedlot or manure storage area does not run into water;
-Ensuring that nutrient-rich manure is applied to cropland at a rate, time and method that prevents nutrients and other possible contaminants from entering streams, lakes and ground water.
The MPCA works with farmers to make sure their feedlots are environmentally safe. It provides technical assistance to farmers, and conducts inspections at feedlots to be certain they comply with environmental requirements. Some of those requirements for feedlots include:
-Construction specifications that ensure the feedlot will properly contain the manure;
-Manure management plans for many medium and large-sized feedlots
-Requirements for the amount and placement of nutrients spread on fields.
Feedlot rules have been in effect in Minnesota since the early 1970s. In October 2000 a major revision of the feedlot rule (Minn. R. ch. 7020) went into effect. Another update occurred in 2014. The main goals for the feedlot rule are:
-Register all feedlots capable of holding 50 or more animal units (AU-see page 4), or 10 in shoreland areas.
-Focus on animal feedlots and manure storage areas that have the greatest potential for environmental impact;
-Expand the role of delegated counties in the feedlot program;
-Increase agency and delegated-county staff field presence.
The feedlot rule does not specifically regulate pasture operations; however, they still must abide by Minnesota Rules chapter 7050 prohibiting pollution of state waters.
The legislature provides funds to counties to implement state feedlot regulations. The funding received is primarily based on the number of feedlots in the county.
The reports below are past projects that have been done through the East Polk SWCD.
The County Feedlot Officer (CFO) can be contacted at 218-563-2777.