October trial set in Shore pollution suit over chicken waste

A new trial date has been set for Oct. 9 in an environmental group's lawsuit accusing an Eastern Shore farm couple and Perdue Farms of polluting a Chesapeake Bay tributary.

The case brought by the Waterkeeper Alliance was originally scheduled to begin this week in U.S. District Court, but was postponed by Judge William M. Nickerson to encourage the sides to try to reach a settlement.

Perdue spokeswoman Julie DeYoung said in an email Wednesday that despite talks, "it does not appear the case will settle." The company and Alan and Kristin Hudson of Berlin, who raise birds for Perdue, deny the Waterkeepers' allegations that chicken waste from the farm contaminated a nearby waterway.

Jane F. Barrett, director of the University of Maryland environmental law clinic, which is representing the Waterkeeper group, declined comment.