DES MOINES, Iowa -- The U.S. pork industry is releasing its first-ever farming responsibility report: 2012 Pork Industry Progress Report, Responsible Farming. Our Heritage. Our Future. The 36-page report details the evolution of modern pig farming over generations and tracks advancements that have been made in vital areas such as food safety, animal well-being, environmental stewardship and worker safety.
Highlights from the report include research showing reductions in environmental impacts over decades, an assessment of animal housing options, guidelines for responsible antibiotic usage, statistics quantifying farm worker participation in certification programs and perspectives of leading industry experts.
The report makes clear that today’s modern hog farms combine the best of traditional farming practices with the benefits of modern technology and agriculture science.
“Hog farmers are eager to explain how we care for our animals, the environment and community well-being. We recognize that consumers lack firsthand knowledge of what modern farming looks like, and we want to provide them with that information because we have a great story to tell,” said South Dakota family farmer Peggy Greenway.
U.S. hog farmers’ commitment to responsible farming has led to many notable achievements. Consider:
- Thousands of farmers and farm employees have pledged to uphold a set of ethical principles that outline the industry’s values and define how individuals represent the industry every day on farms across America.
- Data from a 50-year study (1959 to 2009) revealed that productivity gains in pork production actually went hand in hand with decreases in environmental impacts, helping to safeguard natural resources for generations to come.
- A record number of farm personnel (55,000) are now certified by Pork Quality Assurance Plus®, the industry’s leading training program that promotes best practices to advance animal well-being.
- Comprehensive traceability and animal identification processes are in place to protect public health and ensure availability of safe, wholesome pork products in the marketplace.
The 2012 Pork Industry Progress Report was published as part of the We Care SM Initiative, a joint project of the National Pork Producers Council and the National Pork Board to raise awareness of modern pig farming in America. We Care is a voice for countless hardworking animal agriculture professionals who actively promote responsible and ethical practices in all areas of pork production.