State Pork Associations in the News: Ohio, Nebraska, Illinois

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Ohio Pork Council Launches Job Board 
To keep up with the ever-growing pork industry, members of the Ohio Pork Council are bridging the gap between rising unemployment and a deficit workforce, according to an Ohio Pork Council release. This summer, they are launching Ohio Pork Careers – a job board website that farmers can use to inform jobseekers about entry-level job opportunities available on Ohio's pig farms.

With countless job boards being utilized within the pork industry, OPC strives to create a one-stop-shop for pork producers to turn to in their employee attraction process. Free for Ohio pork producers, job openings can be added to the site in minutes.

“Ohio’s pork producers are always seeking qualified, hardworking employees to add to their team. With the growing unemployment rate and the need for added labor on-farm, that couldn’t be more true today. takes the guess work out of the employee attraction process for farmers,” Ohio Pork Council President Dave Shoup said in the release.

Ohio pork producers and pork industry employers can sign up for a free account by visiting After the account application is approved by the Ohio Pork Council, members of Ohio Pork Careers will be able to access ready-to-use job titles and descriptions that can easily be formatted to fit the needs of their operation, and start posting on the job board.

“Access to qualified labor continues to be at the forefront of the Ohio Pork Council’s priorities. With Ohio Pork Careers, we hope to gain more access and break the stigma that you have to grow up in agriculture to work on a farm – that’s not the case in Ohio’s pork industry,” Shoup said in the release.

NPPA Announces 2020 Pork Mentorship Program
The Nebraska Pork Producers Association announced the 2020 Pork Mentorship Program. This year, six college-age students will participate in the program that has worked to further develop youth leaders through individual and group-based learning experiences since 1999.

Participants in the 2020 Pork Mentorship Program are:

Alexa Kaiser of Eagle Point, Ore., is a senior at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln (UNL) studying agricultural and environmental communications/agriculture economics. Throughout college she been part of livestock judging teams at Butler Community College and UNL. Alexa also studied abroad in Spain and France, learning about food production systems.

Hunter Rathjen of North Platte, Neb., is a freshman at the University of Nebraska – Kearney studying accounting/public law. She participates in the Model UN, Beta Alpha Psi, the Pre-Law Society, the Honors Program and volunteers for the Salvation Army and various church activities.

Jacob Vallery of Plattsmouth, Neb., is a junior at UNL studying agronomy. He enjoys farming, golfing, fishing and bow hunting and competes in crops judging.

Lindsay Peters of Scribner, Neb., is a junior at UNL studying animal science with an option in food and animal production management. She plans to attend graduate school because of her interest in swine research and the animal welfare.

Tristin Smith of Curtis, Neb., is a freshman at UNL studying animal science. Tristin is involved in Block and Bridle, FFA and bible study. He loves showing livestock, hanging out with friends and traveling.

Will Sonderman of Columbus, Neb., is a junior at UNL studying agribusiness with a livestock production option/animal science, Beef Industry Scholars. Will is a member of the meats judging team and enjoys hunting and fishing in his free time.

Each year, participants in the Pork Mentorship Program participate in activities that encourage personal growth, career readiness, and develop leadership skills, while expanding their knowledge of the pork industry. Participants will receive a $500 scholarship upon the successful completion of requirements throughout the year-long program.

Illinois Pork Producers Association to Open Pork Patio for Two Days in August
The 2020 Illinois State Fair is canceled, but the Illinois Pork Producers Association will be opening up the Pork Patio for lunch on August 14 and August 21 so pork enthusiasts can get their fix, according to a release.

They will be serving up the Pork Patio’s top sellers – Chop-on-a-stick and pork burgers – beginning at 11 a.m. both days until supply runs out underneath the Commodities Pavilion across from the grandstand. They will also offer chips and bottled water.

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