Wholestone’s smaller slaughterhouse on schedule, opposing group wants debate


by: Eric Mayer, KELOLAND TV (SD)

Sep 14, 2022


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – A debate on what the future of Sioux Falls looks like is ramping up as construction continues at the site of Wholestone Farms’ “custom slaughterhouse.”


Luke Minion, CEO of Pipestone Holdings and Chairman of the board for Wholestone Farms, told KELOLAND News construction to finish the smaller-scale hog processing shop is on schedule to be finished by the middle of October. Wholestone Farms wants to have the facility up and running before a November 8 vote on whether the city of Sioux Falls will prohibit construction of new slaughterhouses within the city limits.


“There’s obviously a lot to do and we’re thankful to be making good progress,” Minion said. “All the things that we need to get done to harvest our first pig there, we expect mid-October to have that done. And then harvest more pigs going forward.”


The Sioux Falls City Attorney’s explanation of the initiated measure notes “the ordinance does not pertain to any existing slaughterhouse constructed and operating before the effective date of this measure, nor does it apply to the expansion or alteration of any slaughterhouse constructed and operating before the effective date of the measure as long as the expansion or alteration occurs at the existing site.”


That’s why the group opposing Wholestone Farms’ plans for a “state-of-the-art” hog processing facility on 175 acres near Interstate 229 and Benson Road has filed a civil lawsuit against the city of Sioux Falls to stop the construction.


Smart Growth Sioux Falls legal counsel Brendan Johnson told KELOLAND News he wants to protect the debate regarding slaughterhouses in Sioux Falls.    


“Our community is going to be having a big debate over this. It’s going to take place in churches and coffee shops and civic clubs,” Johnson, a former United States Attorney for the District of South Dakota, said. “We should have that debate about things like water and air quality. I want to make sure that we’re able to have that discussion and make sure that we have a vote that matters in November.”


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