‘Right to Farm’ Squeaks By Missouri Voters

12:14PM Aug 06, 2014
10 24 11 Missouri harvest 2
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Controversial ballot measure passes with margin of 2,528 votes out of nearly 1 million cast.

Missourians now have the "right to farm" after voters yesterday narrowly approved the hotly debated constitutional amendment in statewide elections.

The amendment, which guarantees Show-Me-State residents the right to "engage in farming or ranching practices," passed by just 2,528 votes out of the nearly 1 million votes cast, according to unofficial totals.

Given the close results, though, a recount is possible. The margin in the election was just .254 percentage points, with 50.127% of Missourians voting "yes" on the measure versus 49.873% voting "no."

The topic has been a controversial one in Missouri. Environmental groups such as the Sierra Club opposed the measure, suggesting it could harm family farms by favoring large-scale agribusiness.

Other organizations, such as Missouri Farmers Care and the Missouri Farm Bureau, advocated for the amendment; supporters say it will give farmers and ranchers of all sizes the ability to manage their operations and adopt new agricultural technologies without excessive interference.