Hormel Foods recently announced that all hogs purchased by Dec. 31, 2009, will be raised by pork producers who are certified in Pork Quality Assurance Plus, have completed well-being assessments on their farms and have Transport Quality Assurance certification.

PQA Plus certification requires pork producers to attend an educational and training session as well as an on-farm site evaluation to achieve PQA Plus site status. The program also includes a third component of random, statistically valid, third-party evaluation of program implementation. There are currently over 20,000 pork producers certified in PQA Plus. 

“We are encouraging all pork producers to support this great pork industry initiative supported by the National Pork Producers Council and the National Pork Board," said Brian Stevens, director of pork procurement, Hormel Foods.  "We are also honored to fully support the pork industry's new responsible pork initiative called 'We Care'. “

"This action reaffirms pork producers' commitment to the U.S. pork industry and its customers," said Tim Bierman, a PQA Plus-certified pork producer from Larrabee, Iowa and NPB member.  "We are extremely pleased that Hormel Foods has joined in the pork industry's effort to focus on the 'We Care' pork industry responsible pork initiative by requiring PQA Plus certification and site status."

Bierman echoed Steven's comments, "Producers' belief in ethical principles and their participation in PQA Plus and the TQA program are proof of our commitment to producing safe pork and prioritizing the well-being of our animals and the development of our communities."

Hormel Foods joins Hatfield Quality Meats of Hatfield, Pa. and Salmon Creek Farms Marketing Association and Independent Meat Company of Twin Falls, Idaho in showing their commitment of PQA Plus.

Source: NPB