Pigweed. Farmers hate it, especially southern farmers. One Arkansas farmer was murdered over a dispute when his neighbors sprayed illegal Dicambra to kill pigweed. Farmers hate it because each plant makes millions of seeds. One weed left undestroyed can fill a field with the useless plants in no time.
But one man in the small town of Goshen, Alabama loves pigweed. For him it’s a godsend. What was once a noxious weed has become his cash crop and his life couldn’t be better, sort of.
Like the Arkansas murder victim, Billy Bob (not his real name) has a problem with his neighbors spraying Dicambra. He has protected his special field for now, but he worries that it’s just a matter of time before spray drift wipes out that field and his livelihood.
He’s worried because he can’t really talk to his neighbors about his problem. If he did, they would want to see his special field and that would let the cat out of the bag. That could be a bigger problem because what he’s doing might not be legal.
You see, he’s growing pigweed intentionally and his neighbors might not like that at all. Thing is, this isn’t just any old pigweed. It’s special. It’s a new kind of pigweed that yields a valuable harvest. Billy Bob isn’t exactly looking forward to the day when all his neighbors are growing the same plant. He would rather keep the secret to himself for now.
His operation is small today, and very profitable. He wants to expand, but it’s a big risk planting closer to his neighbors because of the drift and because they might notice. It’s a bit of a bind.
How did he get into this situation? At first everything went smoothly. He contacted a few of the big companies that might want his crop and he got some interested replies. So he picked one and sold them a trial harvest. They liked it and wanted more, so he expanded his tiny plot into a full acre. They bought it all up and wanted still more. That’s where Billy Bob is now, contracted to a big corporation demanding more harvest than he can deliver, and no safe place to grow it.
Billy Bob’s looking for more land, but the small harvest limits what he can afford. It also takes time to move his farm and bring a new crop to harvest. He’s afraid of angering his corporate patron by failing to keep up with demand. So he’s decided to take a chance. He planted three more acres this fall and is hoping for an early spring harvest. He figures that will keep Perdue happy for now.
Yep, Perdue, the chicken company. You may ask what would Perdue want with pigweed? Good question. They have no interest in pigweed and their contract with Billy Bob doesn’t say anything about it. They think Billy Bob runs a chicken operation and is selling them premium chicken livers. They have no idea how he is really getting those tender, delicious livers. If they found out before he’s ready, he could be in big trouble. Lawyers. Lawsuits. Hard time.
As it turns out, his special pigweed just happens to grow big juicy chicken livers.
Billy Bob doesn’t know how that happened, and frankly, he doesn’t care. He just likes the price he gets for the harvest. It’s better than any other crop he’s ever grown, a lot better. That’s why he took the chance on expansion. If he gets lucky and dodges the Dicambra bullet, then he’ll make enough from those four acres to buy a bigger spread. The demand for chicken livers is high and he wants to be the biggest producer. We wish him luck.
Meanwhile, we still want to know where this chicken liver pigweed came from. We’re already digging into that secret. We’re checking the usual suspects: the government, aliens, Monsanto. Whatever the story is you’ll read about it here first.
Real Fake News Sources: Anonymous tip and RFNN follow-up investigation