Missouri WINS Right to Farm!!! YAY!!!
Constitutional amendment results: Narrow win for 1
Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to ensure that the right of Missouri citizens to engage in agricultural production and ranching practices shall not be infringed?
JEFFERSON CITY – The question of whether to create a constitutional right to farm in Missouri proved to be a tough one to decide for Missouri voters.
Proposed Constitutional Amendment One passed by only 2,500 votes Tuesday.
Locally, the amendment failed. In Greene County, with 100 percent of precincts reporting, the vote was about 62 percent no to 37 percent yes.
The amendment will make farming an official constitutional right, similar to existing protections for the freedoms of speech and religion.
The proposal prompted an intense campaign that generally split urban and rural areas.
The measure, called “Right to Farm” by supporters, will enshrine a right to agriculture and ranching within the Missouri Constitution. Amendment One could limit future legislation or ballot initiatives seeking to regulate agriculture.
“Agriculture is our state’s foremost industry. In many ways agriculture defines who we are. As one of Missouri’s leading exports, it is how we dialogue with international markets and our state must always remain competitive in those global markets,” Attorney General Chris Koster said during a visit to Springfield.
Opponents of Amendment One fear it will make regulating agriculture more difficult and could eventually lead to some current regulations, such as those placed on puppy mills, being overturned. They also fear Missouri’s restrictions on foreign ownership of farmland will fall if Amendment One passes.
In 2013, Chinese company Shuanghui International purchased Smithfield Foods, which is headquartered in Virginia but operates in Missouri. The General Assembly passed legislation designed to exempt the company from the foreign ownership ban.
Similar “Right to Farm” measures have been approved in North Dakota and Indiana.
Indiana’s new measure — which was written into state law but not made part of the constitution — protects the rights of farmers to use “generally accepted” practices, including “the use of ever-changing technology.” The North Dakota measure prohibits any law that “abridges the right of farmers and ranchers to employ agricultural technology, modern livestock production and ranching practices.”
Disclaimer connected to this blog…Things said are of my opinion and the opinions of others…Stay tuned -B