ASA Disappointed At Loss Of Pork Checkoff Program

first_imgThe American Soybean Association (ASA) today expressed disappointment upon learning that the National Pork Checkoff Program has failed to gain the support necessary to continue the program.“ASA is saddened to learn that the Pork Checkoff has failed to receive enough support to continue the program,” said ASA President Tony Anderson, a producer from Mount Sterling, Ohio. “ASA supported continuation of the National Pork Checkoff, and urged its board members, state affiliates and producer members to voice support for the Pork Checkoff. ASA believes the Pork Checkoff was an effective tool for enhancing demand for U.S. pork products, which was beneficial for pork producers and soybean producers.”Almost two pounds of soybeans are utilized for every pound of pork consumed in the U.S. The checkoff-funded “Pork. The Other White Meat®” helped increase the per-capita consumption of pork by 5 pounds in the past five years. A record 54.2 pounds of pork are consumed annually per person in the U.S. The average hog diet contains about 22 percent soybean meal, which translates to 424 million bushels of soybeans used in hog feed last year.“Pork producers have provided a market for 27 percent of all the soybean meal crushed in the United States,” Anderson said. “Although the outcome of the Pork Checkoff Referendum is not what ASA had hoped for, the Association strongly supports a democratic process that affords producers the opportunity to determine their own destiny.”The soybean checkoff recently went through a request for referendum process. Last May, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that a referendum would not be necessary because less than 3 percent of those eligible to sign the petition did so. The process demonstrated that the vast majority of U.S. soybean producers support their checkoff.“ASA has found that producer support for the soybean checkoff increases in direct proportion to a producer’s knowledge of checkoff-funded activities and how these programs directly benefit soybean producers,” Anderson said. “It’s unfortunate that a majority of pork producers failed to see such value in their checkoff program.”last_img

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