Wisconsin develops “Passion for Pork” program


Many meat packing plants are reopening, but creative solutions are still needed. One group is working to ensure backed up livestock will not go to waste.

The “Passion for Pork Program” developed in Wisconsin helps pork producers find a market.

Wisconsin Pork Producers Association Executive Director Keri Retallick says that the initiative lines up producers with local processors.

“We want to make some kind of initiative to line up pork producers in the state of Wisconsin that needed to get some pigs processed with a local processor,” she said. “So, we worked to develop Passion for Pork with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection to cooperatively work together with these communities, our pig farmers and our processors, to get those pigs harvested and into a food product that our consumers can enjoy and also get food into our Wisconsin food banks.”

Processors and farmer can start by contacting the Wisconsin Pork Producers Association.

“What we need to know is how many hogs do they have, then we send that information out to meat processors and try to line them up,” Retallick said. “The concern that we have right now is a lot of our local meat processors, which is a good problem to have, are booked out with their appointments several weeks, if not months, in advance.”

The hogs for the “Passion for Pork Program” are being supplied by Wisconsin pig farmers. However, there are significant costs associated with the processing, storage, and delivery of the pork to food banks, and pantries.

The association is currently accepting donations from the public to support the continued operation of the program.