[Masthead] Overcast ~ 41°F  
High: 54°F ~ Low: 43°F
Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

October is Pork Month

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Giving a hand - Janet Sullivan (right) is letting Adam Cedar (center) vaccinate a piglet on the Sullivan Hog Farm during the fifth-grade farm tour held on Sept. 16. Photo contributed
October celebrates one of Iowa's leading industries, as it is designated "Pork Month" each year.

The Cherokee County Pork Producers are made up of area farmers whose mission is to promote the sale and production of pork. You'll find the group out grilling at many area functions.

According to Dave Sullivan, President of the CCPP, the group has 106 members who are mostly Cherokee County farmers. Also the CCPP has around 90 associate members, made up of Cherokee county businesses and individuals who are in some way involved with pork.

New friend - Jasmine Ramirez carefully holds a day old piglet on the Sullivan farm. Photo contributed
The group is active in many of the area annual events like the Fourth of July BBQ held in the Fareway parking lot, Ag-days, the Ag-Show, the Cherokee County Fair, and Cherokee Depot during the Rodeo just to name a few. Sullivan said that CCPP even grilled at a couple of graduation parties this year. "It only takes $75 to fill the tanks," says Sullivan. "You give us a call and we'll be there."

Some of the special events that the CCPP has been involved in with this year were the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation fundraiser, Aurelia Little League, were they donated pork burgers for the season, the fifth grade farm tour and many medical benefits.

Plus the CCPP hosts their group's annual banquet. The event is open to all members and their spouses.

On Friday October 3rd the CCPP grilled at the Fareway parking lot from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. They hoped to raise enough funds to purchases an enclosed trailer to house all of their grilling equipment. The CCPP will also be grilling at the Hy-Vee parking lot on Oct. 24, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

From May to October, the CCPP has been in such demand that the group had to get a different grill. "We wore out the first one," said Sullivan.

In January, the CCPP will be having a membership drive. Membership is offered to anyone who works with pork and the annual dues are only $35 a year. Or to become an associate member, it is only $25 a year and single person $30. Sullivan added, "That's a great deal, you get your money back just from the Banquet and Golf Outing alone." Their Golf Outing was held at the Aurelia Golf Course in August.

According to the Iowa Pork Producers Association the livestock industry is a very important component of the economy of Cherokee County. Hog production is especially important as a value-added industry that uses the feed grain production of the region.

Twenty-seven percent of the corn and 23 percent of the soybeans produced in Cherokee County are fed to hogs in the county. According to the 1997 census, there are 244 farms with hogs in Cherokee County. There are 390,657 hogs marketed in Cherokee County annually.

On any given date, there are 222,808 hogs in the county. These hog numbers translate into about $42 million of economic impact from hog production. Total employment associated with the hog industry, including meatpacking and all secondary off-farm employment is estimated at 1,266 jobs.

Overall, an estimated 281 jobs are directly associated with hog production and another 127 jobs are indirectly linked to other agricultural sectors. The total income associated with the Cherokee County hog industry is distributed in a pattern similar to the employment impacts. Total income, including wage and salary and proprietor's income generated by the local hog industry is an estimated $4 million.

By combining total income with all net economic activity related to the county's hog industry, the total economic contribution is an estimated $40 million.

The CCPP also attended the State Fair and represented Cherokee County at the Pork Fair and Roast where they give the taste of Cherokee to all.

If you would like to have the CCPP at one of your functions just contact any of the CCPP board members. The current board members are Dave Sullivan and Janet Sullivan, Rodney Parker, Marla Conley, Fred Springer, Jeff Ducommun and Linda Ducommon, Doug Davis Cindy Davis, Larry Gerdes, Mark Wilkie and Scott Osborn, Simmon Fuller, Kristy Bergstrom, Randy Bergstrom and Nick Sullivan.

Students from Cherokee Middle School recently had their fifth-grade farm tour, and as part of the tour the youngsters had an opportunity to visit Dave and Janet Sullivan's hog farm. There the students learned all about raising hogs. Photos contributed

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: