A veteran state lawmaker who has served on the House Agriculture Policy Committee for eight years says Missouri needs a cow processing plant.
State Rep. Warren Love, R-Osceola, is also a rancher. He notes Missouri is second in the nation in cow numbers.
“I don’t know that we can justify what I call a processing plant to justify processing what I call fed-cattle, most of those are further west of us. But we have a lot of cows in Missouri,” Love says.
Love, whose western Missouri district includes Warsaw and Wheatland, attended the recent legislative Joint Committee on Agriculture hearing in Jefferson City. He is pleased to hear the news from State Rep. Don Rone, R-Portageville, that an effort is underway to get a cattle slaughter facility in Missouri.
“And if you draw a 100-mile circle around Joplin, Missouri, you’re going to find a lot of cows. And I believe we can justify a cow processing plant of size big enough to compete,” says Love.
Love, a Missouri Cattlemen’s Association member, says there was a cattle slaughter facility years ago in western Missouri’s Rockville, which is in Bates County. Rockville is west of Osceola.
Love says the Rockville plant was used by cattle producers across southwest Missouri, as well as southeast Kansas, northeast Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas.
During last week’s hearing, Representative Rone testified that he and State Rep. Dan Shaul, R-Imperial, met recently with retailers and meat wholesalers.
“This would be a processing plant in Missouri, for Missouri for Missouri-grown cattle and to be sold in Missouri,” Rone says.
Rone emphasizes the effort is in its very early stages, telling Missourinet we’re a “long way from brick-and-mortar.” A specific region hasn’t been selected.
Joint Committee on Agriculture Chairman Mike Haffner, R-Pleasant Hill, supports the plan. Supporters of the proposal hope to form a working group by July.
Click here to listen to the full interview between Missourinet’s Brian Hauswirth and State Rep. Warren Love, R-Osceola, which was recorded at the Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City on May 28, 2020:
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