The U.S. pork industry message will be in good hands this next year as three busy “Bs” will be spreading the good news that producers have to share.
Bailee Arnold, Ben Luebbering and Ben Wikner were announced today as the 2019 class of Pig Farmers of Tomorrow at the 2019 National Pork Industry Forum in Orlando. Arnold, Luebbering and Wikner are set to carry the torch that has been lit by last year’s Pig Farmers of Tomorrow class of Emma Lasco, Christine Snowden and Adam Krause.
Arnold is a sow farm manager for Goldsboro Milling in N.C. She manages nine employees to provide care for sows and piglets on her farm near Vanceboro, N.C.
“Working in the pork industry is a rewarding career,” Arnold says. “What most excites me about being a Pig Farmer of Tomorrow is the chance to share my story and educate those who have questions about how their food is grown.”
Luebbering and his family own Profits Point Farm near St. Thomas, Mo. They farrow and finish pigs, as well as raise cattle.
“My family and I care for each pig individually,” Luebbering says. “Raising healthy pigs is important to us, and I’m excited to share our story with consumers, especially on social media. As farmers, we must share what we do on our farms every day to provide the best care for our pigs.”
Wikner is a second-generation pig farmer. With his family, Wikner owns and operates a farrow-to-wean farm and also raises corn and soybeans near Farmersburg, Iowa.
“It is important for people in the pork industry to speak up so that our story gets told correctly,” Wikner says. “The connections we make help dispel misconceptions about our farming practices and show consumers how much we care about raising healthy pigs.”
An industry panel of judges selected the 2019 Pig Farmers of Tomorrow, who all have had a Common Industry Audit completed on their farms.
“It is important for the Pork Checkoff to recognize the future leaders of the pork industry,” says National Pork Board President Steve Rommereim, a pork producer from Alcester, S.D. “We are excited for these young farmers to share their unique stories with consumers.”
The award recognizes farm leaders, ages 18-29, who intend to make pig farming their life’s work and who are committed to raising pigs using the pork industry’s We Care ethical principles. The winners will speak at Pork Checkoff events and provide content on #RealPigFarming, which is the pork industry’s social media program.