Company vows to look into dust problems - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Company vows to look into dust problems after residents complain

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Residents in Brunswick County are complaining about the amounts of dust blowing in the air. Residents in Brunswick County are complaining about the amounts of dust blowing in the air.

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) - The rain can't come soon enough for some people in Brunswick County – specifically, people who live next to Ag-Mart Farms in Leland.

Neighbors are complaining about the amounts of dust blowing in the air.

"Today, all you do, you walk around out here you'll see dust coming up off the ground every step you take," said homeowner Steve Neff. "That's how much dust has accumulated."

Neff says any time the wind is forecasted to blow from the west, he knows it is going to be bad.

Neff isn't the only one to complain -- two cars close by that were clean Thursday were covered in dust Friday.

"We can't keep anything clean here," said another neighbor, Orlando Delgado. "The house inside here is a mess. You clean today; tomorrow, it's the same…all dusty."

Neff is a disabled veteran and has had his home professional cleaned several times. His concerns don't end with cleaning, though.

"I'm scared of what's in that dust, and about what's coming off the farm," he said.

Saturday, an Ag-Mart spokesperson released the following statement:

"Our company plants a cover crop between our seasons to protect the nutrients in the soil. Recently, we plowed the fields to start getting ready for this season's crop, which leaves the dirt most exposed to the wind. We're now in the process of laying plastic for our crop which will minimize the impact of wind picking up dust."

"Ag-Mart Produce apologizes to our neighbors who may have been inconvenienced by the dust coming off our farms. Company representatives will be visiting neighbors to learn more information. As a company, we will look into ways to minimize the impact that high winds have on our farm during this time of year as we prepare to plant our crops."

"Currently, we are in the process of laying plastic and have not conducted any spraying for this season. In addition, Ag-Mart Produce has taken a considerable amount of steps in recent years to become a leader in corporate social responsibility. More than seven years ago, we eliminated the use of all teratogenic chemicals and transitioned into a crop protection program that is largely comprised of Organic Materials Review Institute-Approved. Ag-Mart Produce is committed to being on the forefront of sustainable agriculture. "

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