A group of about 100 protesters stormed the Washington, D.C. office of the National Pork Producers Council Monday, interrupting work and forcing physical confrontations, according to NPPC.

"In an attempt of 'good faith' we tolerated inappropriate behavior by activists for years," says Barb Determan, an Early, Iowa, pork producer. "We thought we could tell the truth and pork producers would listen to us. But as of today, the protestors have taken their actions too far. Not only are they ridiculing and defaming the character of NPPC's CEO Al Tank, their actions today have threatened the NPPC staff. How can they be doing all of this in the name of the pork checkoff?"

The protesters included members of the Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, Minnesota Land Stewardship Project, and the Illinois Stewardship Alliance. All of these groups are part of the National People's Action, an umbrella coalition which lists as its priorities school violence, quality wages and training for American workers and predatory lending.

NPPC supports the settlement agreement announced Feb. 28, 2001, by USDA. As a result of the settlement agreement, the mandatory pork checkoff will continue. The checkoff will continue to be invested in programs that will promote pork, educate consumers and producers, and address critical research priorities for pork producers of all sizes and geographic locations. As a result of this settlement brought forth by USDA, checkoff-funded programs will continue to benefit pork producers.