Operation Main Street Milestone

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This summer, the Pork Checkoff’s Operation Main Street will reach a big milestone-10,000 presentations. National Pork Board director of producer services Ernie Barnes says OMS is reaching higher-end audiences.


Don Wick


Ernie Barnes, Director of Producer Services, National Pork Board




Don Wick: 00:04 From the Pork Checkoff in Des Moines, Iowa this is Pork Pod. Pork Pod, a look at the hot topics in today’s pork industry, the Pork Checkoff is working for you through various forms of research, promotion, and consumer information projects. This is Don Wick on behalf of the Pork Checkoff and today our guest is Ernie Barnes, director of Producer Services at the National Pork Board, Ernie overseas Operation Main Street, and we’ve got a big milestone coming our way. Ernie, tell us about it.

Ernie Barns: 00:41 The thing that has been exciting recently is we are getting close to our 10,000 presentations. What I like the most of all the presentations we’ve given so far this year, well over half of them are the 2.0 audience. And when I say a 2.0 audience, I’m talking about dietitians, veterinary, college of veterinary. Some of the higher end audience is that producers are enjoying going out, sharing the positive story about pork are some of those audience.

Don Wick: 01:06 Are you continuing to get people to sign up and going through the training so they can go out and communicate that story?

Ernie Barns: 01:13 We are. We’re recruiting a little bit better in some of those areas that we don’t have quite as large of a footprint. Here in Iowa, the Midwest, we’ve got plenty of speakers, but we’re finding that we can use some outside the pork but print a little bit better, so we’re looking for speakers again, pork producers, but acres outside of that area so we can utilize their talents without having to fly people all around the country.

Don Wick: 01:45 Obviously a lot of credibility when you’re standing in front of any audience, I would guess especially with that 2.0 type of audience.

Ernie Barns: 02:00 Absolutely they do and we’ve played around with a few audiences and giving them some virtual tours of a hog operation like South Dakota research farm or teaching farm at South Dakota state and we’re playing a video for him of the actual time, right. While those producers are speaking to a audience, we’ll hook them up with some of the students there and let them ask questions directly to those students, so I think that the consumers or the general public wants to know what’s going on inside those buildings and we’re doing our best to share that information with.

Don Wick: 02:33 If producers are interested in participating, what’s involved with the training, what do they have to do?

Ernie Barns: 02:40 It’s about a day and a half training will start, uh, uh, some morning go through, uh, uh, that evening or, and then kicked it off and go to about noon. The next day. Now they have to do is contact us at National Pork Board, either 800 number or call me direct and we’ll let them know when we do the next training. Presently, we do not have a training scheduled for later this year, but if we had enough interest, we could certainly make that work.

Don Wick: 03:09 Ernie Barns from the Pork Checkoff. Thanks to you for listening to this edition of Pork Pod. For more information on this topic or the Pork Checkoff itself, please visit pork.org.