National Pork Board Meeting to Elect Officers and Work on Budget

Friday, Jul 17, 2009 – The National Pork Board will work on current and future budgets and elect officers when it meets July 21. The board is meeting in conjunction with the annual National Pork Industry Conference at the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.

Market hog prices that have been lower than projected when the board’s 2009 budget was approved, plus some additional expenditures approved by the board during the H1N1 flu crisis, are prompting the board to review spending for the remainder of 2009. Pork Checkoff staff will be recommending spending reductions in several program areas. The board also is expected to approve strategic objectives and to set a budget target for 2010. The objectives and budget target will guide producer-led committees and the Plan of Work Committee as they make program and budget recommendations for 2010.

The board also will elect a new president and vice president. Current President Steve Weaver of California will remain on the board. The current vice president is Tim Bierman of Iowa, who also will remain on the board. Board officers serve one-year terms.

Board members Dennis Michael of South Dakota and Dianne Bettin of Minnesota, both of whom served two terms and were not eligible for reappointment, will be attending their final meeting as board members.  Their positions and three others will be filled by appointment by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Pork Act Delegates at the 2009 Pork Industry Forum nominated and prioritized eight pork producers for consideration by the secretary. Once the new members are officially appointed , they will serve three-year terms.

Also on the board’s agenda are a review of the board’s candidate nominating procedures; an update on planning for the anticipated fall flu season, and a report from the Center for Food Integrity, of which the board is a member.

National Pork Board meetings are open to the public.

The National Pork Board has responsibility for Pork Checkoff-funded research, promotion and consumer information projects and for communicating with pork producers and the public. The Pork Checkoff funds national and state programs in consumer education and marketing, retail and foodservice marketing, export market promotion, production improvement, science and technology, swine health, pork safety, and environmental management and sustainability. For the past half century, the U.S. pork industry has delivered on its commitment to sustainable production and has made significant strides in reducing the environmental impact of pig farming. Through a legislative national Pork Checkoff, pork producers invest $0.40 for each $100 value of hogs sold. Importers of pork products contribute a like amount, based on a formula. For information on Checkoff-funded programs, pork producers can call the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-7675 or visit