By Kyle Sharp
About 60 Ohio pork producers heard about a new product that could offer some benefits on their farms during the Ohio Pork Producers Council (OPPC) Annual Meeting, held Dec. 13 at the Der Dutchman Restaurant in Plain City.
The evening meeting included a presentation by National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) CEO Neil Dierks.
“He gave an update on many of the exciting things NPPC has done over the past year, including trade agreements, fighting unreasonable regulations and other things going on in Washington,” said Dick Isler, OPPC executive vice president.
Isler also reviewed the many OPPC activities of the past year and recognized new and retiring members of the OPPC Board of Directors. Retiring from the Board after completing four-year terms were Duane Stateler, McComb; Jean Bell, Zanesville; and Dave Grauer, Shiloh. Joining the Board are Kyle Brown, Marion; Connie Surber, Sabina; and Rich Deaton, New Madison.
OPPC activities highlighted included presentations on pork and pork production in 217 high school family and consumer sciences classes reaching nearly 4,700 students just since September, and more than 8,900 students reached last school year; pork-related educational kits sent to 620 second-grade teachers, reaching 15,500 students; participation at the Preble County Pork Festival, with 150,000 people attending; more than 238,000 views of OPPC-produced videos on YouTube; three new videos/television ads produced featuring Ohio pork producers; a consumer e-news e-mail regularly sent to 10,500 subscribers; 30,000 pounds of ground pork donated in 1-pound packages to Ohio food banks during October Pork Month; and two annual trips to Washington, D.C., to meet with legislators about issues important to the pork industry.
“Probably the most outstanding thing that helped pork producers this year is exports,” Isler said. “Exports are up 23% over last year. More than one-fourth of all the pork raised in the U.S. is exported.”
The OPPC annual meeting was moved up this year from its traditional time prior to Ohio Pork Congress in February. Members must have liked the change.
This year’s attendance is the best we’ve ever had,” Isler said “We had a great crowd of major stakeholders in Ohio’s pork industry learning what is new with the Ohio pork council.”
For more from the OPPC see the January issue of Ohio’s Country Journal.