Note: Today we introduce our newest feature, Pork Personality. This new addition to our website and magazine provides readers and consumers with a more personal look at the industry’s passionate men and women.
Born and raised in a Chicago suburb, Erin Brenneman grew up as most of the country’s consumers – removed and disconnected from the farm. That all changed when she met and married her husband, Tim, at Iowa State University.
Today Brenneman specializes in “day one pig care” and can be found in the farrowing house working alongside 10 immediate family members to keep her in-laws' farm running smoothly. Her two young sons are helping to keep the tradition alive, assisting with pig chores on weekends and during school breaks.
She says, “We truly are a family farm in every sense of the word and we have great passion for sharing our farm story. We love giving farm tours to whomever wants to see how a modern farm works and the practices that we use.”
Brenneman recently sat down with PorkNetwork to answer our questions:
Q: The best pork dish you ever ate was…
A: …Hamballs made by my mother-in-law. This was hands-down the best pork meal ever!
Q: What is your favorite memory?
A: My favorite memory is buying my very first horse and working with the barn's horseback riding lesson program to pay his board. It was a proud and fulfilling time of my life. I felt so accomplished, independent, and happy.
Q: What words do you live by?
A: "Do one thing better than everybody else,” said by my father-in-law in one of our Sunday morning pig care discussions.
Q: If money were no object, what would you do all day?
A: I would most likely expand my "horse collection" and have enough money to feed them all!
Q: What do you miss most about being a kid?
A: I miss the freedom to be able to live without electronic devices at our fingertips constantly. Aka- going outside, building a fort, getting dirty, and enjoying it.
Brenneman was recently voted one of the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance’s “Faces of Farming and Ranching” contest. She also is a PorkNetwork contributor.