Midwestern Hog Farms Keep Mysteriously Exploding

6506284705_6ed9d1801a_bHog farming is even grosser than you imagined. Farms keep spontaneously blowing  up due to chemical interactions involving bacteria-laden gas and a brown goop of sketchy origin. Ars Technica writes:

Since 2009, six farms have blown up after methane trapped in an unidentified, pit-topping foam caught a spark. In the afflicted region, the foam is found in roughly 1 in 4 hog farms.

There’s nothing farmers can do except be very careful. Researchers aren’t even sure what the foam is. “This has all started in the last four or five years here. We don’t have any idea where it came from or how it got started,” said agricultural engineer Charles Clanton. “Whatever has happened is new.”

A gelatinous goop that resembles melted brown Nerf, the foam captures gases emitted by bacteria living in manure, which on industrial farms gathers in pits beneath barns that may contain several thousand animals. The pits are emptied each fall, after which waste builds up again, turning them into something like giant stomachs: dark, oxygen-starved percolators in which bacteria and single-celled organisms metabolize the muck.

  • Raz

    Buuuumm! Shit everywhere.

  • Nunzio X

    I suspect some terrorist pigs who got past the DHS.

    • Calypso_1

      were those pigs halal?

      • Mushbooh

        Filthy infidel swine! Pigs are never halal. This is why a martyr can be denied the pleasures of paradise by dipping your weapon in the accursed blood of the piggy abomination.

  • http://www.ContraControl.com/ Zenc

    I love me some bacon, but commercial hog farming is an environmental abomination.

  • Curious

    Can anyone explain to me why this methane gas is just dispersed instead of being used as a natural gas to (at the very least) run farm machinery if not to be sold commercially?

    • Raz

      Just like in Madmax. I should have my own thunderdome!

      • Hadrian999

         who runs barter town

        • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

           DO NOT WANT!!! Given my love of pork products…I’d wind up in the pits with “Pig Killer” written on me. I’ll pass.

  • Broken_Finger

    Factory farming:  So cheap!  So efficient!  So…shitty and foamy.  They should be renamed Santorums.  

    • Redacted

      Post of the week!

  • http://www.yourpredator.com Hunter Coch

    Master Blaster!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/WorldPeace-Shabazz-Archdeacon/100000658652449 WorldPeace Shabazz Archdeacon

    some farms do utilize this methane, as a source of energy; but its probably under utilized.

  • Dave Holcomb

    When you’re operating on such a scale that the methane byproducts of decomposing poop have the potential to blow your roof off … well, then maybe you’ve got a few too many pigs in one place. Industrial farming. They may be their own worst enemies. 

  • Calypso_1

    Let’s outsource the pork industry to Iran.  That’ll learn’em.

  • 5by5

    Shit is flammable. Where’s the “mystery”?

    • DeepCough

      Funny, somehow the “terrorists” haven’t figured this one out, either.