Residents and business owners filled Burt Hall to full capacity on Thursday night to express their views over the ongoing smell in South Inishowen.
Further meetings are now being sought to mount pressure on Glenmore Estates, with the aim of an organised action group for the community being set up to tackle the issue.
Concern was raised in recent weeks over the continued spreading of digestate in the 2,500-acre area with home and business owners suffering as a result.
And while two members of the Finn Valley company were in attendance, Murray, who also attended the meeting on Thursday, said a full commitment was needed to stop the spreading of the digestate permanently.
He told Donegal Daily: “I think it was a massive step forward for this community in the right direction.
“I believe that the community showed that they are not going to be pushed over on this and they stand totally united in bringing an end to what is an environmental assault on the South Inishowen area.
“I am glad there was representation at the meeting from Glenmore Estates and I know that they left that meeting, without any doubt in their minds of how strongly the community are going to fight this,” Murray said.
“They gave a commitment to engage with the community but there is no commitment yet to ultimately stop the spreading of this toxic substance.
“This issue is far from over and I am certain that this won’t be the last public meeting over this issue in Burt.”
A loophole in current legislation leaves the company within their rights to continue the activity in the area, despite the recent and ongoing push back from the community.
And Murray said the ‘unmoral’ loophole had to be looked at again at on a national level.
“There seems to be a legislative loophole which makes this legal and they are within their rights to continue to do this,” he added.
“But, as I said at the meeting last night, it doesn’t make it right, it doesn’t make it moral, and it certainly doesn’t make it acceptable to the people and we’ll fight and work for change on this loophole on a national front.
“The legislation seems to not exist or has been closed in England and in the six counties and just because it doesn’t exist here yet doesn’t make it acceptable.
“I would appeal to the goodwill and the conscience of the owners of the company to stop this.
“They have heard how much of a health impact this has on the community and they need to recognise the massive impact they are having on people.”
However, Glenmore Estates issued its own statement on Friday, refuting claims it is using legislative loopholes to spread digestate in South Inishowen.
It read: “Further to last night’s meeting at St. Mary’s Hall in Burt, Co. Donegal, Glenmore Estate Farms wish to provide clarification on a number of points raised and the associated reporting of.
“Glenmore Estate Farms operate an organic dairy farm at the An Grianán farm near Burt. In
accordance with the nutrient management plan in place for the farm, digestate which is a renewable organic fertiliser is applied to lands as a substitute to chemical fertilisers.
“Glenmore Estate Farms wish to clarify that they do not spread “chicken excrement” to lands. The digestate fertiliser used at the An Grianán farm is produced in accordance with strict EU and National standards at the Glenmore Biogas Plant. Digestate is an excellent and safe fertiliser containing all macronutrients and micronutrients necessary for modern farming, including nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.
“The material is a product of the anaerobic digestion process at the Biogas Plant. Digestate is pasteurised, which eradicates animal or plant pathogens, and is then tested in an approved laboratory for a wide range of parameters including nutrients, metals and microbes. Glenmore Estate Farms refute the allegation of the company using “legislation loopholes” in respect of their activities and seek further clarification on this.
“Glenmore Estate Farms wish to thank the organisers of the event and those who attended and participated. Glenmore Estate Farms look forward to meeting with the Local Action Group when formed and are committed to working with the local community to resolve concerns expressed.”