U.S. pork producers picked up an important ally this week in their effort to properly name the H1N1 flu virus when the president of the National Newspaper Association urged community newspaper publishers and editors to use precise language in coverage of the flu pandemic.
The announcement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday that tests are being conducted to determine if three pigs from the Minnesota State Fair in August are the first confirmed cases of the Novel H1N1 virus in the U.S. swine herd provides an opportunity to stress three important messages:
To achieve the best human and animal health protection possible, the Pork Checkoff is advising producers, farm personnel and others who have contact with pigs to get the regular seasonal flu vaccination as soon as possible.
What’s the latest on the H1N1 flu? What are pork producers doing to be prepared? Is the economic forecast for the nation’s pork industry getting any better? Viewers of RFD-TV will have an opportunity to get answers to those questions and more on Monday, Oct. 12, when the Pork Checkoff will sponsor an hour-long program that includes the opportunity for viewers to call in questions.
The Pork Checkoff, along with its cosponsor, National Hog Farmer magazine, has selected four pork production operations to receive the industry’s highest environmental honor, which is the 2009 Pork Industry Environmental Steward Award. The award, now in its 15th year, honors producers who demonstrate a firm commitment to safeguarding the environment and their local communities.
The National Pork Board will meet in Des Moines on the afternoon of Sept. 9, the day before more than 50 producers from across the country arrive in Des Moines to begin work on budget recommendations for 2010.
Tim Bierman, a farmer from Larrabee, Iowa, has been elected by his fellow board members as president of the National Pork Board. Dr. Gene Nemechek, a veterinarian with Tyson Foods in Springdale, Ark., has been elected vice president. Both begin immediately to serve one-year terms.
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.
Pork producers are being reminded to review their use of feed/water tetracycline-class antibiotics (tetracycline, oxytetracycline or chlortetracycline) to make sure their use meets standards set by some export markets for U.S. Pork.
Stephan Hesse, executive chef of The Oak Grill in Minneapolis, Minn., won top honors in the 20th annual national Taste of Elegance™ contest June 29 in Baltimore, Md. The competition, sponsored by the Pork Checkoff, featured 29 chefs, all winners of state and regional Taste of Elegance contests.