2018 marked the 10-year anniversary of the Pork Power: Partnering to Fight Hunger in Illinois campaign. A movement led by the Illinois Pork Producers Association and supported by the Illinois Corn Marketing Board and Illinois Soybean Association checkoff program. The program was created as a way for pig farmers to give back to their local communities. Throughout the year, IPPA aids farmers by covering the cost of processing, when hogs are donated. Towards the end of the year, IPPA converts all remaining funds into pork and the pounds are distributed between the nine regional foodbanks in Illinois.
“As farmers, we want to feed our communities, including those in need,” says Austin Rincker, a farmer and chairman of the Illinois Soybean Association Marketing Committee, from Moweaqua. “Pork Power offers a practical opportunity for soybean producers to do just that. As a livestock feed ingredient, soybean meal provides critical protein, and pork production uses nearly 79% of soybean meal fed in Illinois.”
At the 2018 Illinois Pork Expo, Mike Hoffman, director of Operations at Midwest Food Bank, spoke to pig farmers about the importance of their protein donations to hungry Illinois residents. He went on to challenge pig farmers to reach a donation goal of 80,000 pounds. Pig farmers answered the call and provided over 96,000 pounds of protein in 2018.
“Participating in this program throughout the holiday season is a highlight for our board. We love knowing that we’re helping hog farmers and helping hungry families in Illinois by simply donating and processing pork. Our record 96,000 pounds of donated pork is something we celebrate! We look forward to partnering with the Illinois Pork Producers Association again in 2019 to provide this needed protein to our Illinois food banks,” says Don Duvall, Illinois Corn Marketing Board chairman.
Since its inception in 2008, Pork Power has generated over 721,000 pounds of pork -- enough for 2.4 million meals for families throughout Illinois. Farmers and partnering commodity groups give pork and monetary donations all year round. Also, t-shirts are sold at the Pork Patio during the Illinois State Fair to specifically raise money for this cause.
“We recognize the need for high-quality protein is year-round and Pork Power offers a practical way for Illinois farmers to work together to feed our communities,” says IPPA current past president, Mike Haag.
During the 2019 Illinois Pork Expo, Hoffman challenged Illinois producers to an even bigger give of 100,000 pounds this year.
Source: Illinois Pork Producers Association, who is solely responsible for the information provided, and wholly owns the information. Informa Business Media and all its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset.