When pork producers introduced We CareSM it was important that five of the six ethical principles were production related: Producing safe food, enhancing animal well-being, protecting the environment, safeguarding natural resources and providing a safe work environment. For the sixth and final ethical principle, there was no question that it would address contributing to a better quality of life in the communities they call home.

From volunteering at community events to providing pork to a local fundraiser, being good neighbors has always been part of what makes pork producers who they are. And this holiday season is no different. Producers are getting on board with #HamsAcrossAmerica.

The initiative kicked off Nov. 29 on Giving Tuesday, which falls each year on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. The nationally recognized day promotes charitable giving and pay-it-forward programs.

Pork producers are extending Giving Tuesday throughout December with #HamsAcrossAmerica, which will become an annual event. Farmers and others involved in the pork industry are showing their appreciation for friends, family and neighbors through the gift of ham – in the form of gifts or donations of ham or ham-based products.

Some of these activities are being highlighted on social media using #RealPigFarming. All producers are invited to join in and to share their stories. So gift a ham, or two or 20. And happy holidays from all of us at the Pork Checkoff.

– Jan Jorgensen, editor