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Grassland Dairy to pay $300,000 for exceeding pollutant discharge limits


MADISON, Wis. (WSAU) -- A Clark County dairy producer will be paying a hefty fine for exceeding the limits of their Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit.

Grassland Dairy Products has been ordered to pay $300,000 after the Attorney General’s office obtained a judgement against them. Grassland reportedly failed to comply with a biochemical oxygen demand discharge limit of 82.6 pound per day. Department of Natural Resources investigators found the plant had several days where the discharge was 150 % of the permitted limit.

The DNR regulates BOD, or biochemical oxygen demand levels because it affects the amount of dissolved oxygen in nearby waterways for aquatic life. The nearby Black River is on the Environmental Protection Agency’s list of impaired rivers due to low oxygen in Clark County.

The violations occurred between 2006 and 2013. Grassland has upgraded their wastewater treatment plant to address the problems.

Grassland is one of the world's largest producers of butter. Every day, hundreds of milk producers ship millions of gallons of milk to Grassland. It also produces other dairy products, including condensed milk, milk protein concentrate, buttermilk and nonfat dry milk.