On Dec. 3, U.S. pork producers were asked to step up and accept a three-word challenge: Give a ham.
And give a ham you did. Over the last few weeks my social media has been flooded with photos and videos of U.S. pork industry members taking part in the fourth annual Hams Across America campaign.
From the launch on Giving Tuesday through Dec. 23, individuals, pork production systems and state associations were out in full force, buying a gift of ham (or any pork product) and paying it forward to those in need. Participants shared their pay-it-forward stories on social media using #HamsAcrossAmerica and #GiveAHam, and challenged others they know to join the cause and share how they live the We Care ethical principles which include Food Safety, Animal Well-Being, Public Health, Environment, Our People and Our Community.
I have to say this Christmas season crept up on me, and often I felt behind on getting everything done. I also admit I have been in a little bit of a "bah humbug" mood this week with so many negative stories about our industry: Gangs benefiting from ASF crisis, NBC story on NSIS: Long on drama, short on facts.
But all that goes out the window when I scroll through social media and see how our pork industry members truly exhibit the spirit of Christmas. Pork producers give of themselves all year long, but they really step it up in this season of giving.
A three-word challenge, #GiveAHam, and this year pork industry members really knocked it out of the park. Here's a mere glimpse into the giving this season and on behalf of National Hog Farmer we hope you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!