Pork producers gather for the 29th annual World Pork Expo. this week

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Pork producers from around the globe will gather in Des Moines this week for the 29th annual World Pork Expo.  

The World Pork Expo begins Wednesday at the Iowa State Fairgrounds and will continue through Friday.  

This is the premier event for pork producers.

Doug Fricke serves as the director for the world pork expo trade show and says more than 45 different exhibitors will be located at this year’s show.

“The fairgrounds is pretty much occupied all the way around,” said Fricke. “The Varied Industries Building, the ag building and outdoors, then all the way down to the swine barn and cattle barn, as well as the sheep barn where we have the swine shows going on down there. So, there’s over 450 companies that are here showing their products and services.”

Fricke says pre-registration indicates more than 20,000 producers and exhibitors will be attending this year’s world pork expo.  

Fricke says, in addition to the trade show and seminars, there are several hospitality tents and food can be found at every corner of the fairgrounds. 

Cindy Cunningham is the Assistant Vice President of Communications for the National Pork Board.  

She says World Pork Expo serves as an excellent opportunity for pork producers to network and learn from other pork producers.  

She says many producers will want to attend the ‘Pork Academy.’

“Pork in this case actually stands for Producers Opportunity for Revenue and Knowledge. They are 45 minute seminar sessions. So, just a quick hit of a seminar on the latest issues and topics facing pork producers today. It is in an air conditioned environment, so you can step in out of the heat, grab some information on the pork industry and really have it designed to put into practice on your farms, today,” said Cunningham. “It looks at things like pork quality initiative, social media and pork production, compensation of pork production, anti-biotic alternatives, also, there’s a session on exports. Really, it is the key information that producers need on their farms.”

World Pork Expo is known for having great barbeque, and this year is no different.  

From the big grill to all the hospitality tents, you are certain to have enjoyable and tasty barbecued pork.

Cunningham says the National Pork Board will be offering different pork dishes found around the world.

“Wednesday afternoon there is a special feature inside the pork check-off hospitality tent, and that’s called “passport to pork,” said Cunningham. “What we’re doing is featuring variety meats. So, it’s US pork that is shipped around the globe. And you’ll be able to sample some of these products that people in other parts of the world enjoy, when they enjoy US pork. So, pinwheel flavored with Peruvian spices, Cuban styled jowl bacon, Korean styled skirt steak, and tongue flavored with Asian spices.  But to sweeten the deal, we willhave chocolate chip cookie-bacon s’mores. So, stop on out to the pork check-off hospitality tent, and enjoy some great pork.”

Economics is  one of the topics that will be discussed. However, also, pork exports will bea topic of interest.

US pork producers are always trying to expand the international market trade.  

Right now, 25% of all US pork is exported to foreign nations.


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