Huge chicken farm has iwi, vege growers worried

Watch the video for the full story from The Hui, including Tegel's response.

Dargaville locals are crying fowl about Tegel's proposal to build the country's largest broiler chicken farm in their backyard.

The proposed site is in Arapohue, a small settlement south east of Dargaville, and neighbouring properties - including the Kapehu Marae - are furious.

Marae chairwoman Margaret Mutu says the enormity of the project has them very concerned.

"We won't be able to use this place, we'll be covered in dust, we won't be able to use the water off our roof because that will have all of the dust and we won't be able to hear ourselves speak."

The Tegel farm will have 32 sheds which will house 1.3 million chickens at any one time. The urupa sits on the hill overlooking the proposed site for the chicken farm. It's only 350 metres away from where their loved ones rest.

"Those sheds will have massive fans on the top and they will also have a chimney where they're burning 40 tonnes of litter and paru, mimi teko from the birds every day and that will disperse immediately to the urupa."

Tegel has asked both the Kapehu Marae and local iwi Te Roroa to complete a cultural impact assessment of the proposed development. Te Roroa has completed its report, and the marae is working with the University of Auckland to finish its assessment.

However, the marae is not alone in its concerns - local organic vegetable grower Robert Vincent fears his business could be at risk.

"The risk we feel is toxins being blown off [the chicken farm]. The worry is that when it comes it'll too late. It can't be undone, and you can't manage the wind".

The Dargaville community held a protest last month to express their distaste for the proposal.

Submissions are now being considered by the Kaipara and Northland Regional Councils, with a decision being made in the coming months.

The Hui