Livestock Production in Illinois

Livestock Management Facilities Act (LMFA)


IFBBrandlogoSince it was enacted in 1996, the Livestock Management Facilities Act (LMFA) has provided a balanced approach in protecting the environment and allowing farmers the ability to raise livestock on their farms.

Illinois Farmers Talk About LMFA:

LMFA Fact Sheet:


The LMFA governs all new or expanded livestock farms in Illinois. The act sets construction standards for buildings, manure storage structures, and lagoons, regulates manure handling systems, and requires certification of livestock farmers.

Eight siting criteria must be met before a new farm can be built or an existing farm can be significantly expanded. The criteria address waste management, environmental protection, compatibility with the character of the surrounding area, odor control, traffic patterns and consistency with community growth and economic development.

Livestock farms are held to a zero discharge standard in their management of manure. All manure is required to be completely contained in manure handling structures such as concrete pits and then applied to fields according to crop needs.

The LMFA requires any livestock farm with 50 or more animal units to abide by setback distances from adjacent residences and populated areas. These setback distances range from 1/4 to 1 mile depending on the size of the farm and the number of adjacent homes.

IDOA (Illinois Department of Agriculture) staff reviews the design and siting characteristics for each farm to ensure it meets required design standards. These include ensuring concrete meets strength and load requirements, the design capacity is sufficient, and other technical requirements.

IDOA inspects farms before, during, and after construction to ensure that the farm is constructed properly and meets regulatory requirements.

Farmers must be certified in livestock managment and must renew their certification every three years. Farms designed for 1,000 or more animal units are required to develop a manure management plan and certify to IDOA that they have one in place. Farms with 5,000 or more animal units must submit manure plans to IDOA for approval before operating.

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