My family has shown livestock for generations, so when it was finally my turn in the ring, I felt the need to be the best I could be. My parents and Grandpa Ronnie were my biggest supporters, but also my harshest critics. They gave me great advice that mattered not only in the show ring, but also in life.
The livestock industry’s greatest product isn’t the number of shows organized, nor the amount of banners awarded. It’s not even the elite livestock bred to compete at the highest level. Our greatest product is the youth that will go on and use the skills they learned to impact their communities in a positive way.
We’ve all heard it. With less than 2 percent of the United State’s population directly involved with production agriculture, we have to share our story with consumers about what farmers do. This is especially important since the majority of Americans are removed from the farm.
To celebrate National Pork Month, fondly known as PORKtober, the Showpig.com team is catching up with some “agvocates” to learn how we can all better represent the swine industry. This week we have tips from Thomas Titus of Elkhart, Illinois. Thomas operates Tri Pork Inc as well as a purebred showpig operation, RBC Chesters. He is former Face of Farming and Ranching for the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance as well as a #realpigfarming advocate for the National Pork Board giving tips on how to best build impactful consumer relationships.
Collegiate livestock judging is equivalent to Sunday night football for stockmen and women, and the National Barrow Show (NBS) is the swine enthusiast's Super Bowl. Will Taylor of Western Illinois University (WIU) just had the honor of topping the reasons division at NBS. The Showpig.com team caught up with Will, and he was kind enough to offer us these tips to help you rock the reasons room.
It’s PORKtober! In honor of National Pork Month, the Showpig.com team is learning what #realpigfarming means to those in our industry. We caught up with Team Purebred President Jordan Monier to see how the swine industry has shaped his life.
It’s time to go back to school, and some of us may be more excited than others to grab our backpacks and head off to learn new things. There is a common misconception that students interested in production agriculture don’t need to pursue further education after high school graduation, but the Showpig.com team wanted to share some stats with you about how important it is to get schooled in ag.
Keeping your pigs cool is a key part of having successful, showring-ready projects. Whether you have barrows or gilts in the barn, there is no doubt that they can feel the summer heat. Pigs can’t sweat like you or I, so when they get hot it is harder for them to cool down.
With the consumer market for pork and other protein sources changing rapidly, the Pork Checkoff is putting the finishing touches on a plan to capitalize on those changes by repositioning pork marketing, Terry O’Neel, president of the National Pork Board, told an audience at World Pork Expo Thursday. “The Pork Checkoff has embarked on a journey to determine how best to market pork today,” O’Neel, a pork producer from Friend, Neb., said. “The direction may be drastically different than we’ve seen in the last quarter century.”
The Showpig.com team asked legendary swine auctioneer Col. Dan Baker to recall some of the greatest lessons he has learned along the way. He wrote this account of some words of advice that have followed him through the decades.
For more than a decade, Austin Pueschel has been showing pigs. This Sturgis, Michigan native has seen success on the national stage, served as a Team Purebred Junior Board member, and has placed in the top 10 showmen at every major swine show. Currently, Pueschel is attending Iowa State University, in Ames, to pursue his degree in agricultural business. He was kind enough to share with us some of the tips and tricks he learned through the years to help train your showpigs.
These days everyone is tied to a smart phone, tablet or computer. With these tools at our fingertips it only makes sense to put them to work. Here are five fun apps that can help swine producers and showmen keep better records, learn about the cuts of meat and even check withdrawal times for a drug they used on their market hogs.
Did you know that the Pork Checkoff has one of the most comprehensive swine quiz bowl and skillathon study tools available?
With most prospects purchased and summer show season right around the corner, some young people will also be studying for the many other competitions and events available at shows throughout the nation. One such event, the skillathon, gives young people the opportunity to test their chops in all things swine related, such as breeding, animal well-being, swine health and other key topics.
Purchasing pedigreed showpigs has some perks of special classes and sometimes sponsored breed prizes, but this comes with a little paperwork. National Swine Registry’s Eastern Field Representative Blaine Evans offers his tips and tricks to make sure your pedigreed paperwork will be perfect for show day.
There aren’t many hats in the swine industry that Ernie Barnes hasn’t donned at one time or another. From his humble beginnings showing and judging swine as a 4-H’er in Mississippi, Barnes has served as a field representative for the American Yorkshire Club and the executive secretary of the American Landrace Association, before landing in the National Pork Producer’s Council. Throw in a stint as a swine pharmaceutical sales representative and a buyer for a packer, and it’s safe to say Barnes knows this great industry inside and out.