RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A federal judge says he won’t send jurors for a see-and-sniff tour of a North Carolina hog-growing operation at the center of a lawsuit claiming industrial-scale pork production causes ugly conditions.
Judge W. Earl Britt ruled Monday that jurors would not get a true feel for conditions with one quick visit to a Bladen County farm growing animals for Virginia’s Smithfield Foods.
Britt’s decision came as jurors were being selected for a trial that could shake the profits and change production methods of pork producers after a generation of raising hogs in confined conditions. The trial could take six weeks.
Lawyers for the farm’s neighbors said the jury tour was requested just as the farm was removing millions of gallons of waste for the first time in 23 years.