You’ve likely heard the phrase, The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. First coined by ancient philosopher Aristotle, it aptly defines today’s concept of synergy, or T.E.A.M. – together everyone achieves more. From sports teams to business projects to neighborhood fund-raisers, pooling resources, ideas and effort allows us all to accomplish more.

Pork producers have long embraced this mentality, including the forward-thinking “Moline 90.” The farmers who met in 1966 put the gears in motion to unite America’s pork producers to set industry priorities, such as boosting pork sales and improving pig genetics, and to providing the means to fund progress.

Fast forward to today, and you can see that same spirit of collaboration paying off through impactful, far-reaching programs and initiatives funded by your Pork Checkoff investment. This issue highlights some of those efforts, and while different in scope, partnerships that strengthen the impact of your Checkoff dollars are a common theme.

That’s readily evident in two major challenges now facing U.S. pig farmers – the global spread of African swine fever (ASF) and market- challenging large pork supplies.

Threat of ASF – The Pork Checkoff, the National Pork Producers Council, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, the Swine Health Information Center and USDA together have developed a list of actions to aid prevention and response planning. The group is working with USDA to prioritize actions. You can read more on page 8, but you can also keep up to date on this fast-moving topic at pork.org/FAD and securepork.org.

Large pork supplies – Partnerships also are important in helping move this fall’s large pork supplies, both here and abroad. Teaming with Google, the Pork Checkoff has debuted new digital marketing tactics to connect more strategically with consumers. Also, ongoing promotions with retail and foodservice partners are prompting consumers to choose and enjoy pork domestically, while the Pork Checkoff continues to grow sales of U.S. pork in both long-term and new markets abroad.

The industry has come a long way from the Moline 90, but yet we’re at the same point… joining together to make a bigger impact for the good of all.

– Jan Jorgensen, Editor