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okPORK PAGES official magazine of the Oklahoma Pork Council |

Volume 19 | Issue 3 | Fall 2015

2015 Youth Issue



Fall 2015

SQ 777 - Right to Farm

okPORK Executive Director Roy Lee Lindsey talks about the need to pass a Right to Farm. This initiative will require your help to succeed!


Taste of Elegance Taste of Elegance drew 12 premier Oklahoma Chef’s and benefitted Central Okla. March of Dimes. You’ll get hungry seeing photos of these great pork dishes.



Oklahoma Pork Open Earlier this month pork industry and allied industry professionals gathered for a day of golf, supporting okPORK and even margaritas.


Youth Leadership Camp

Class IV of Youth Leadership Camp brought great students together to learn Oklahoma’s pork industry from farm-to-fork. Long bus rides, great questions, hands-on meat processing and even cheesefries - read about it all!



Building Leaders

Each July, for more years than we can count, okPORK has hosted the Youth 4 Pork Speech contest during Swine Field Day at OSU. Read about this year’s big winner. 2 • Oklahoma Pork Council


Fall 2015 Volume 19 • Issue 3 BOARD OF DIRECTORS OFFICERS President | Keith Reiner, Enid President Elect |Cathy Vaughan, Rosston Vice President | Robbie Woods, Enid Treasurer | Phil Olipahnt, El Reno BOARD MEMBERS Darren Appleton, Enid Tina Falcon, Tecumseh Dottie King, Calvin Joe Popplewell, Stillwater Chris Wallis, Allen EX OFFICIO Dr. Scott Carter, Stillwater Wathina Luthi, Gage Brett Ramsey, Jones Rob Richard, Stillwater STAFF Executive Director Roy Lee Lindsey, Jr. • Office Manager Donna Jackson •

October 16 | Vast | 7 p.m. | 5 courses paired with Bourbon Tickets are $125 (limited to the first 100)

Communications Specialist Kristin Alsup • Event and Outreach Specialist Lloyd Hawkins • Oklahoma Pork Council 901 North Lincoln Blvd., Suite 380 Oklahoma City, OK 73104-3206 Phone 405.232.3781 • Fax 405.232.3862 Toll free in Okla. • 888.SAY.PORK WEBSITE ON THE COVER Members of Youth Leadership Camp Class IV stop to enjoy the sunset after a wonderful dinner provided by Roberts Ranch of Oklahoma. Photo by Nikki Snider Programs are made available to pork producers without regard to race, color, sex, religion or national origin. The Oklahoma Pork Council is an equal opportunity employer. okPORK PAGES is the official publication of the Oklahoma Pork Council and is published four times per year in March, June, September and December by the Oklahoma Pork Council. All Pork Pages inquiries should be directed to the okPORK office or Writer Kristin Alsup Designer Nikki Snider Editor Donna Jackson

Stay Connected : search okpork •3


Yes on State Question 777 – Right to Farm The buzz amongst ag groups in Oklahoma is swirling around State Question 777 – Right to Farm. SQ777 will be a ballot question on the November 2016 general election ballot which would create a constitutional protection for farming and ranching in the Oklahoma Constitution. Today, ag groups across the state are formulating a plan to secure a Yes on SQ777 in next year’s election. That plan includes looking for individuals who are willing to serve as community and county group leaders for Yes on SQ777 efforts, individuals who are willing to speak to local civic and community groups about the importance of the question, individuals who are willing to help assemble and distribute Yes on SQ777 signs, individuals who are willing to be in campaign materials and ads, and individuals who are willing to donate money to support our cause. To help us accomplish this task, we’ve created a coalition – Oklahoma Farmers Care SQ777. You can find out more about our efforts, sign up to volunteer to just get more information, and donate all through our website at WWW.OKLAHOMARIGHTTOFARM. COM. I would encourage everyone to check out the website and sign up for updates on our efforts and to be a volunteer. This is a big undertaking and we’ll need everyone to chip in to make this a successful campaign. As a part of our coalition, I had 4 • Oklahoma Pork Council

the honor and privilege to be a part of the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association Convention last month to discuss the importance of Right to Farm to Oklahoma agriculture and to express my appreciation for the leadership OCA staff has provided as we work on this effort. This truly is a group effort and okPORK appreciates the efforts of all the ag groups. During our panel discussion at OCA, and in almost every discussion we’ve had with the public about Right to Farm, the first question asked was “why is this necessary? Don’t we already have the right to farm?” The short answer to that question is no. We don’t have a constitutional right to farm. Today we have been granted permission by the state to engage in farming and ranching, but there is nothing that would prevent the legislature from revoking that permission. SQ777 will prevent future legislatures from adopting restrictions on farming and ranching practices without a compelling state interest. One of the key provisions of this question is the compelling state interest. What this means is the legislature can’t just decide they don’t want people raising pigs in Oklahoma. They must have a compelling state interest to restrict our production practices. This doesn’t mean the state can’t put some limits on what we do. I think everyone agrees that having clean drinking water is a compelling state interest. This means

the state would still be able to adopt regulations to protect water quality. As our state’s population becomes more and more urban and further removed from the farm and where food comes from, passage of SQ777 will provide protections for future generations of Oklahomans to engage in farming and ranching and it will help us provide food and fiber for an evergrowing world population. This will be a long and arduous process. We will need everyone to pull together and help us get SQ777 across the finish line in November 2016. Please take just a few minutes to visit www. website and sign up to be a volunteer and/or to donate to help our cause. We need you and we need you now. •


Greetings from the farm! Wow! Where has my first six months as Board President gone? Seems like just yesterday we were at okPORK Congress and today we are gearing up for SQ 777, also known as Right to Farm. It has been an extremely busy six months – participating in ag day at the Capitol, hosting Youth Leadership Camp, eating and enjoying Taste of Elegance and working on a strategic plan during our Board Retreat – just to name a few activities. There is no slowing down I can see in the future with the first ever Swine and Stein dinner, the State Fair coming up, then the fifth annual Bacon and Bourbon event – which only gets us into mid-October. We have been busy, busy, busy. Youth Leadership Camp is always one of my favorite events. The kids get to ask questions we’ve never


thought about asking and they have the opportunity to speak with managers and owners in the pork industry. I believe the experience provides them with the opportunity to learn a great deal about production, which they would have never had a chance without this camp. But not just that, they learn about the process of pork production from farm to the plate and it gives farmers and industry people the chance to show the next generation what pork production is about – up and personal. I believe the Board retreat was productive this year. We teamed up with The Prasino Group to develop a strategic plan for okPORK. The plan will make Oklahoma the best place in the United States to produce baby pigs within the next five years. The group of individuals went into the planning session as a team, with the goal to lay the path for okPORK to be an organization with a plan. That plan is to tackle a restricted budget, state legislation issues and inspire producer participation on all levels, while providing the opportunity to continue to produce a premium product. The first day we spent team building and getting our ideas put together in a list of what we believe will be the biggest hurdles during the next five years. The second day we spent

grooming our plan, setting goals and laying out the path. I think it was one of the better planning meetings we’ve ever had – we now have a clear cut goal and a way to get there. So, I believe in five years Oklahoma will be the best state to produce baby pigs. After lunch on the second day we discussed SQ. 777, also known as the Right to Farm. We discussed how important it is to support the effort, the best way to get behind it and how we plan to fund it. We need to come together as a community, not just pork producers but also as farmers, ranchers and citizens of the state of Oklahoma. We need to talk with our neighbors and friends to explain what exactly SQ777 will do for the state and why it must pass the the question to lay a foundation for protecting our right as Oklahomans. Well – I guess that covers enough for now. I’m excited to see what the next six months bring and hope they are as productive and exciting as the first six. I look forward to seeing you at functions and at the State Fair where Lloyd and Kristin are cooking up a surprise to draw the crowds over to the pork chop shop. Stay tuned for more information, and until then fair winds and following seas. •

Save the Date! Friday, February 26, 2016 •5


2015 Taste of Elegance Benefits Central Oklahoma March of Dimes alking down a hallway you smell food cooking. This isn’t the smell of just anything cooking, but you can smell the mouthwatering smells of a feast made with pork. You walk into a great hall where the tables are spread with small plates of beautiful, delectable food. Tablecloths cover the tops of tables with plenty of chairs to perch on, the bar has cold drinks and you hear your stomach groan with hunger. If the date was July 21, and you were at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, this was not a dream. This was the 2015 Taste of Elegance event. Twelve chefs were invited to compete and sample their recipes during the event. For one price a person could taste the wares of each chef, as well as drinks and dessert.


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Participating chefs included: • David Nguyen - Oklahoma City Golf and Country Club • Chris McDermitt - George Prime Steakhouse • Leland Spence - Renaissance Tulsa Hotel & Convention Center • Henry Boudreaux - Museum Cafe • James Whyman - Impact Catering • Patrick Williams - Vast • Jonathan Groth - Tasting Room • Beau Stephenson - Bin 73 Wine Bar • Shane Roel - Lobby Bar • Caleb Byers -- RePUBlic Gastropub • Josh Partain - Roccocco Restaurant and Fine Wine • Rob Johnson - US Foods

Four people took on the responsibility of judging the dishes prepared by this talented slate of chefs. Dave Cathey, also known as the Food Dude and the food editor for The Daily Oklahoman; Anna Banda, chef instructor at Francis Tuttle Technology Center; Don Thiery, instructor of culinary arts at Platt College Culinary Program; and Shane Ward, director of specialty pork programs for Smithfield/Farmland ultimately made the decision about who would take home the first prize placing. As each plate of food was delivered for judging, pictures were snapped and a round of applause was heard throughout the kitchen. The chefs stood in groups discussing the pork and making jokes as volunteers from the culinary program at Platt College took the competition dishes to the judges. As the competition came to an

Story & photos by Kristin Alsup

end, the chefs prepared sample sized portions of their competition dishes to share with ticket holders. Moving from table to table diners enjoyed small bites of each chef’s plate. Before the end of the night each ticket-holder was asked to vote for their favorite dish. At 8:30 p.m. the awards portion of the event kicked off with emcee Dr. Benedria Smith. She brought excitement and fun to the event all night, but even more so as she took the podium. She called each chef to the front, introducing them to the crowd as she went. Roy Lee Lindsey, okPORK executive director, explained the awards. Lindsey explained how the People’s Choice Award, based on the popular vote of those in attendance, was awarded to Boudreaux with “Peking” pork tenderloin, fried rice and five spice, bacon and plum sauce. Taking third place was Groth of the Tasting Room with his roasted pork belly with chipotle potatoes. The crowd cheered for Roel of the Lobby bar when it was announced his smoked summer pork snatched second place. The crowd continued to clap and hoot for Spence of the Renaissance Tulsa Hotel & Convention Center. His dish included smoked sweet potato, goat cheese

ravioli, braised pork belly and caramel maple foam and was one-of-a-kind. Taste of Elegance not only showcases pork and restaurants from around the area, but it also raises funds for charity. This year okPORK partnered with the Oklahoma chapter of the March of Dimes. “This event is a wonderful way to celebrate not only pork’s flavors and versatility but also the talent of local chefs,” Lindsey said. “Beyond those things though it provides okPORK with a way to get involved with the community and donate to charity on a local level.” The Oklahoma Chapter of March of Dimes helps moms have fullterm pregnancies and research the problems that threaten the health of babies. According to the March of Dimes website 1 in 9 babies are born too soon. The money raised through Taste of Elegance will benefit babies in Oklahoma. Taste of Elegance is more than a dream. Taste of Elegance is your chance to help save babies, have a pork feast and cheer for your favorite chef. We’ll see you there next time. •

Chef Leland Spence (center) of the Renaissance Tulsa Hotel & Convention Center receives top honors from Roy Lee Lindsey, (left) and a representative from March of Dimes.


Thoughts on the latest OALP seminar and Agricultural Media Summit | by Kristin Alsup e all do it. Spend too much time with your friend and you are exhausted, you want them to just be quiet and you might even want to smack them with a fly-swatter. Well, maybe that last part is just me, but I know you understand my point. Then, you and your friend both get busy, you don’t talk much or don’t see each other for several weeks. When the two of you get together all of the frustration with the other person is gone and you can’t remember why you were frustrated in the first place. Welcome to class XVII of OALP. From the time we met in August until April we saw each other often, then from April until July – nothing – not even a single meeting. While Class XVII poured into the parking lot at the Oklahoma State University Botanic Garden in Stillwater, Okla. for the eighth seminar, the excitement could be felt like lightening in the air. As we stood in the parking lot and prepared for the tour, we also had

the chance to begin meeting some of our classmates’ significant others. Once the phrases “I’ve missed you,” “It’s so good to meet you” and “It’s already hot, isn’t it?” were passed around the tour of the Botanic Garden began. Both the eyes and the nose could delight in the surroundings. My personal favorite was the section of the garden called the Sensory Garden because the plants there appealed to each part of a person’s five senses. Moving away from the garden, and as the day grew warmer, we toured the Turf Center Complex. Some of our group was very interested in learning about the grass and yet, while it was interesting, it was more than I ever needed to know about turf grass. We left the garden for the hotel in the middle of Stillwater and we were very glad to feel the air conditioning. We discussed one classmate’s trip to Molokai, Hawaii for an exchange program. We then learned more about how to communicate – especially about

our love languages. While it may sound cheesy and ridiculous – this may have been the single most illuminating discussion of the seminar. Learning more about who each one of us is makes our group stronger. In addition, the married couples were a hoot while the doctor was talking. A discussion about service leadership, followed by some actual service ended the work of the day. We then went to the home of some alumni and shared a picnic with their family and a few friends. It was a great way to catch up among ourselves, meet the husbands and wives and share some delicious grilled food. Friday morning began with a tour of the USDA Hydraulic Engineering Research Unit. While I had no idea what to expect, the reality was eyeopening. I’ve never even thought about how engineers study the way water moves to control floods and this was an experience I will never forget. Back in the hotel conference room

the discussion drifted to the basics of farming and estate planning as well as how to build stronger relationships. It was after these lessons when the group finally had a chance to sit and talk to everyone at the same time. I learned more about how much I am looking forward to my visit to Southeast Asia and how much I can learn there. Seeing friends from around the country The conference I am always excited to have the opportunity to attend is Ag Media Summit. This conference brings together journalists, editors and communications specialists from across the country who work in the ag sector. The Saturday before the conference really gets going on Sunday always provides an opportunity to take a tour of the agricultural aspects of the surrounding area. This year, in the Phoenix, Ariz. area we visited a jalapeño farm, the state’s largest feedlot and an organic dairy. Watching the migrant workers pick

the jalapenos, the Holstein cattle in the feed yard and discussing the perils of organic farming helped me understand I was not in Oklahoma anymore. The things I see each year on the tour help to broaden my knowledge base of the industry as a whole and help me to recognize areas where we can work together and avoid more work. Sunday I participated in a panel discussing the transition from college to the working world with the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. It was the first time for me to help during AMS and I was extremely blessed by how the students responded to our discussions. The questions were gold and the response to the answers from the crowd seemed genuine. Sunday night the conference really gets rolling with a networking dinner party for all attendees. It is a time to catch up with folks of long acquaintance, meet new friends and cut loose. On Monday morning sessions start early. There are two before

lunch and two after lunch. There are also three sessions on Tuesday. From social media platforms to news panels discussing drought and from training on understanding interview questions to sessions about photography, I often exclaim that I learn more during this single conference than I did my second to last semester at Oklahoma State University. The friends and connections I have made during my last five visits to AMS have provided a foundation I would not otherwise have. Friendships built under these circumstances last for lifetimes and are kept new through social networks, emails and text messages. These friendships and the knowledge I gain are not only helpful for me, but to okPORK as we continue to evolve and keep in touch with our consumers and each other. Thank you always for being supportive of me and my path to greater understanding. •


Oklahoma Pork Open Golf Tournament Raisies Funds and connects industry friends


he golf course means many things to many people. For some it is a way to cut loose and have some fun while others see it as a serious business. However, if you are one of the teams to attend the okPORK Open there is very little business happening on the course. The fun occurred August 7, at the Turkey Creek golf course in Hennessey, Okla. Fourteen teams registered to play in this four person scramble. Following a quick registration process, the teams jumped into their golf carts and sped away to their assigned tee-box. The official start at prompted each team to make their way around to each of the 18 holes. The teams laughed and joked and took advantage of the four mulligans per person they are allowed to purchase and use. Who can know what the scores might be without those mulligans. What would an okPORK event be without food? Of course there were two stops along the golf trail to grab a pulled pork sandwich and some chips. The heat of the day caused drinks to flow quickly and for the first time ever okPORK set up a margarita station. For $5 you could get an ice cold margarita to help you cool down.

10 • Oklahoma Pork Council

“Even though it was one hot day, the fun of getting pork producers and other industry individuals together on a beautiful golf course to relax and enjoy such a great day of golf as we had this year was worth it,” Lloyd Hawkins, okPORK Outreach Specialist said. “The okPORK golf tournament is always one of the most fun fundraising events for producers and friends of okPORK.” The results are listed below: 1st: Roberts Ranch #1 2nd: Roberts Ranch #2 3rd: Northwest Ag Law 4th: T & W Tire 5th: P & K Equipment 6th: Seaboard #3 Each year there is only so much money available with which okPORK can develop programs and events. Fund raisers provide the much needed funds for okPORK to plan events that the restricted funds from the Pork Checkoff will not cover. There are several ways for friends of okPORK to get involved and help to raise money through the okPORK Open. The most fun way to get involved is to bring your team out to the golf course. There is a fee for each team, drinks and mulligans to buy.

Another way to show your support for okPORK is to commit to sponsor one of the 18 holes. Each hole sponsor is recognized in the information passed out at the beginning of the tournament. In addition, each hole has a sign to tell who is sponsoring that specific hole. This year, each hole had a sponsor, while some sponsors hosted more than one hole. If neither of the previous opportunities appeal to you, you can sponsor the prize for the hole-in-one, longest drive, closest to the hole or door prizes. If those options aren’t enough you can also be a lunch, jerky, margarita station or drink cart sponsor. With so many ways to get involved, there is no reason not to enjoy a day away from the normal hustle and bustle of your job. Even for people who don’t play golf regularly, this is a fun day out on the course. Don’t wait too late next year and regret your lack of involvement. okPORK looks forward to seeing you there.•

story & photos by Kristin Alsup

1st place team, Roberts Ranch of Okla. #1. Team members are Christian Bond, Ryan Cooper, Robbie Woods and Danny Wymore.

2nd place team, Roberts Ranch of Okla. #2 Team members are Bert Russell, Terry Taylor, Earl Seiger, and Mark McCulley.

3rd place team, Northwest Ag Law. Team members are Drew Ewbank, Corey Watkins, Cade Nickeson, and Todd Hamilton.

4th place team, P&K Equipment. Team members are Ryan Stults, Gregg Black, Scott Eisenhauer, and A.J. Nusz.

The Pork Chop Shop will be open! Oklahoma State Fair | Sept 17-27 Try a new “Chop Stick” - hunks of pork loin (or pork chop) wrapped in bacon or enjoy one of our famous sandwiches. If anyone is interested in working doing “promotion” talking with the public about farming and playing games – spending a day interacting at the fair – contact Kristin.

Focus on Youth

story by Kristin Alsup • photos by Kristin Alsup and Nikki Snider


ump on a bus, jump off the bus, on the bus, off the bus – this is what you do at okPORK Youth Leadership Camp. You know what else you do? You learn everything about the pork industry in Oklahoma that can be packed into a single week. You make friends who can last a lifetime. You eat delicious food and see things no one outside of camp gets to see. The camp participants began trickling into the Hampton Inn in Stillwater, Okla. around 8:30 a.m. on June 15. Shy grins were passed around the room as chairs were chosen and nametags were discovered. The scheduled agenda didn’t begin until 9 a.m. and by the time it rolled around several of the braver camp participants had struck up a conversation.

12 • Oklahoma Pork Council

Jessica Young, Nicole Stevens, Cory Roe, Amber Wright, Piper Merritt, Rhett Pursley, Braden Egger, Paige Dearrington, Maverick Williams, Katelyn Pierce, Jaclyn McCormick, Zachary Guy and agricultural education instructor Chance Owen began a journey like nothing they would again experience. The day began with simple introductions and a list of expectations for the next few days. An overview of who okPORK is and what the pork industry looks like in Oklahoma rounded out the morning before lunch. After a hasty lunch, media training began. Cindy Cunningham of the National Pork Board talked with participants about what to expect and how to conduct oneself during a media interview. In fact, she spent time doing

videos of each camper so they would get used to having the camera on them. The group split into three teams and each team was given a scenario where the media might contact them to give an interview. During the week the teams would have the opportunity to ask questions, gather information and practice the tactics for talking to the media. At the end of the week each camper would be interviewed about their scenario on camera. “I truly enjoyed the media training and learning how to interact with people who don’t understand what we do,” Wright said. Soon after participants and chaperones alike were ready to jump on the bus and hit the road. It was a short drive to Hennessey to meet with Jeff

Mencke who escorted the group on a tour of a Roberts Ranch sow farm. The sow farm was the first experience to get the campers brains moving. Showering in and out of the farm was a foreign concept to most of the participants. Seeing the effort it takes to keep up with biosecurity, disease prevention and nutrition brought on questions from the participants. Farm managers, vet staff, managers in training, human resources and tons of other staff joined the campers for a dinner near the sow farm. The pork loin dinner was not only delicious and nutritious, but also allowed for the campers to ask questions of the many pork industry leaders who were present and get a very thorough answer. “My favorite part of camp was the breeding operation and I liked seeing the producers who were in charge of the breeding operations,” said Stevens. “It was the best getting to go in and see what they do and how they do it.” As the farm tour came to an end and everyone began to file back into the bus, formal questions about the experience were required to be submitted from each participant. The questions would help all of those involved understand what they experienced more thoroughly. The group split into three teams and each team was given a scenario where the media might contact them to give an interview. Throughout the week the teams would have the opportunity to ask questions of people in the industry, gather information and practice the tactics for talking to the media. At the end of the week each camper would be interviewed about their scenario by a professional journalist on camera. Tuesday morning started early with a discussion about genetics. Joe

Popplewell, production manager for Seaboard Foods, spent breakfast discussing the practices Seaboard uses when dealing with breeding and genetics. Even though it was early, the questions flowed like coffee and we headed for campus with full minds in addition to the full stomachs. The first stop was at the Animal Science arena to learn about evaluating hogs while they are still alive. Each of the teams chose an animal and listened to John Staude, the assistant swine herd manager for OSU’s swine farm. He walked the campers through each step and all the data leading to the correct evaluation of the animal. Once the teams had the data gathered from the live evaluation they headed to the Food and Ag Products Center on the Oklahoma State University campus and dressed in the required gear. They then entered the meat science lab. Each team then learned what it was like to harvest an animal. Each camper gained hands-on experience on how to convert their live animal into a useable protein source for the U.S. food supply. “You never get to do this stuff in real life,” Guy said. “You might get to see people processing animals on TV or something but you never get to do it hands-on.” After everyone finished a quick lunch, it was all aboard the bus for the trip to Guymon. During the trip to Guymon camp staff was able to answer questions and discuss the media scenarios with the campers. Nikki Snider, Rusty Gosz, Kristin Alsup and Rick Maloney helped to lead discussions about everything the camp had covered. Tuesday evening in Guymon was a real treat. Mike Freeland, production

manager for Hitch Enterprises, made time to meet the campers at Hunny’s to give an overview of Hitch’s operation and his thoughts on the industry’s pressing issues. The restaurant was closed to the public, so the participants had the entire dining room to themselves. Pulled pork, ribs, and sausage filled plates. While the campers ate they asked questions and had a discussion about pork production in the panhandle. They covered a number of topics including what it is like to be a part of a multigenerational family farm. Water issues, animal safety and making business decisions as a family were all important topics, but the favorite topic was advocacy for agriculture. Wednesday morning began early with breakfast and conversation about careers in the pork industry. The conversation helped to get the campers minds focused for the day and brought up possibilities they didn’t know existed. As the campers loaded the bus the level of excitement was palpable. A short bus ride from the hotel brought the group into the parking lot of the Seaboard processing plant. Once everyone was dressed in frocks, hard hats and safety glasses the group split into three groups and the tour began. During the tour each person experienced every phase of the plant. From the kill floor to the freezers and from the harvest floor to the packaging lines the campers were able to see it all. There wasn’t a single camper who was unimpressed with the speed and efficiency of harvesting approximately 19,000 hogs each day. When the tours finished the plant

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provided lunch and provided the campers with a quiet room in which they could ask questions. The discussion lasted another hour and when time was up, the bus was once again loaded and headed back to Oklahoma City. “I was overwhelmed by the complexity, yet smoothness of the operations at the plant,” Roe said. During the bus ride to Oklahoma City, Gosz began certifying the campers in Youth PQA+. The campers discussed the proper practices for caring for their animals and what it means to be responsible for the safety of meat which will enter the food chain. In addition, the group made a stop in Woodward to speak with pig farmer Bert Luthi. Working alongside his family on their farm, they contract with The Maschoffs to raise pigs in a farrow-towean operation. He spoke about what it is like to work with family, what contract farming really means and how they are planning for the future – both for the next generation jobs and how to stay in business. Wednesday night ended Shorty Small’s Resturant with fried cheese, iced tea and French fries among other things. Sitting at two tables in the back of the restaurant people began to unwind and conversations covered both camp topics and their animal projects at home. Thursday morning started with a discussion about Made in Oklahoma products at Crest grocery store. As the group left Crest it was time to head toward the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry. There a panel sat together ready to discuss all of the legislative issues with which not only the pork industry, but all of agriculture must face. From the coalition supporting Right to Farm to water issues no topic was unwelcome.

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“Seeing the political side of the industry was the most influential part for me. I took such enjoyment from getting to talk policy with people who are a part of it every day and working for the betterment of agriculture,” Merritt said. The bus next stopped at Platt College for a tour of the culinary program. In addition to learning about how you become a chef through their program, the chefs-in-training made pork two ways and served it to us. Unfortunately we tested the bounds of our group’s flexibility after touring the college. The Food Bank was to be the next stop, but then we learned they were without power and our plans needed to be changed. Instead the bus delivered us back to our hotel where the entire group took the opportunity to enjoy some relaxing time. Swimming, shopping and playing took up the rest of the afternoon and by the time dinner rolled around everyone had an appetite. One might say our Class IV invaded Eskimo Joe’s that night, but others might say it was just another night at the ‘jumping little juke joint’ on Elm Street. After enough cheese fries, burgers and milkshakes it was time for a rest and preparation for Friday. The last day of camp took the campers back to OSU’s campus and into the meat lab. Each team received handson experience breaking the carcass down into primal cuts and learned about how to grade the meat. After leaving campus, it was finally time for the media-style interviews. Each camper took turns interviewing in the Oklahoma Horizons studio. When the interviews completed everyone gathered in the studio to critique and learn how to do better in the future. “The hardest part of the entire camp

was the media interviews,” McCormick said. “I don’t want to say I didn’t like it, but it was a struggle.” With the stress of the media interviews in the past, the campers enjoyed a tour of Gallagher Iba Arena and Boone Pickens Stadium. Seeing the turf on the field up close, the suites and the memorial to the 10, the campers prepared to tell their families about the camp experience. As the parents arrived and filled the banquet room in the O-Club introductions were made and boisterous conversation could be heard up and down the hall. Each of the team leaders introduced their team members and everyone took a turn talking about their favorite and most memorable experience from camp. Dr. Clint Rusk, Animal Science Department Head spoke to the group about making the most important decisions in life. The room was silent as he shared his experiences and imparted the knowledge he has gained during his years working in agriculture, many of those years focused on youth development and higher eduction. It was apparent as the banquet ended that each student was carrying home an experience unlike any other. Emotions ran high as parents thanked the staff and Board members from okPORK for hosting the camp and campers said their goodbyes to their new friends. After camp Dearrington said, “If there is anyone who thinks they might want to know about camp – they should apply. You get a chance to learn about everything the pork industry has going on and see it for yourself. The entire camp is awesome.” •

YLC was also featured in Oklahoma Agriculture 2015. Click here to read more!

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My favorite was going to the Seaboard Plant… seeing how everything works and how you get to the parts they actually use. I also really enjoyed getting to process the hogs ourselves. It was an experience I don’t know how I would have gotten otherwise. Seeing everything this week really made me more appreciative of how things got to where they are. Seeing how the meat is produced gives me a better understanding of what it takes to provide food for the people who need it.

Jessica Young | Tecumseh, Okla.

I enjoyed going into the breeding operation and I liked seeing the producers who were in charge of the breeding operations. It was the best getting to go in and see what they do and how they do it. I also liked getting to tour the processing of the hogs. It changed the way I thought about what you look for when you are processing these animals. I had no idea about the differences between what a show pig looks like and what they want in a commercial pig.

Nicole Stevens Yukon, Okla. Before I went, I felt very excited about seeing the industry outside of the show ring. After the week of camp, I realized that the passion did not end outside of the show ring. The integrity and the goals of the people involved with the industry was so much more than I ever expected from the typical outlook of how pork gets to the plate. My opinion of being a part of the pork industry has been strengthened after seeing the employees and how they work and how passionate they seem to be about the industry. It made me have more heartfelt respect for the industry leaders and what they do to give us a quality product.

Cory Roe | Shawnee, Okla.

I absolutely loved camp! I liked it because I got to see the swine industry almost from the outside looking in because I’ve never known much about the commercial industry. My favorite part was the media training and learning how to interact with people who don’t understand what we do. After coming home from camp it makes me excited to share what I’ve learned and advocate for the industry I love.

Amber Wright Pauls Valley, Okla. Camp was incredible and one of the most exciting of my life. The opportunities available will help me for the rest of my life. Seeing the political side of the industry was the most influential part for me. I took such enjoyment from getting to talk policy with people who are a part of it every day and working for the betterment of agriculture. I have always wanted to work in ag policy and help ag against those who wanted hurt it. After discussing the activist groups it made me think about going for my law degree. to work harder at protecting against those who want to hurt agriculture and it was as a direct result of our discussion about the activist groups and how they act toward agriculture.

Piper Merritt | Owasso, Okla.

My camp experience was much more than I expected. I knew I was going to learn a lot of new information concerning the pork industry and the direct production of pork, but whenever I left the banquet on Friday my parents asked how camp was and I talked about it for the entire 2.5 hour ride home. I learned more at camp in one week than I’d learned in all of my own personal experiences with pigs over the last seventeen years.

Rhett Pursley Locust Grove, Okla. 16 • Oklahoma Pork Council

The entire camp was awesome and I don’t think it could have gone better…. My favorite part was where I got the opportunity to have hands on in the harvesting and processing the animals. It helped me have a better understanding of how that works. I didn’t realize that breeding sows could be as interesting as it is. I didn’t think I would be interested in working in production as I am and now I am rethinking it and am amazed at all the opportunity there.

Braden Egger | McCloud, Okla.

The most important seeing how those guys have to shower in and shower out and I didn’t know what that really meant. I thought every part was interesting and information and I can say that I didn’t have a least favorite part. The legislative panel was a good part of camp and it answered the political questions. I knew there were lots of different kind of jobs but it changed my mind on how much they enjoy their job and the kind of people who were filling those jobs.

Maverick Williams| Walters, Okla.

Before camp, I didn’t really know a lot about the industry at all, I didn’t have any clues. I leaned toward pain management for stuff before but then as I talked to people in the industry it made more sense why they do it the way they do. I never knew there were people out there who didn’t want us to show pigs or raise them for food… I didn’t know that many people worked in the industry. I didn’t realize how many different kinds of job openings there were with the harvesting and the genetics. I was impressed by all of the science around the biosecurity and how much thought they put into harvesting the pig… I would encourage people to apply and get involved. You will learn a lot about the pig industry….

Overall I thought camp was an excellent experience and I am glad I was able to apply and attend. I understand how rare it is to be able to tour a commercial sow farm – and I know that is my favorite part. It isn’t often you get to see the breeding side on the commercial side and that was the one thing I wanted to learn most. It wasn’t always serious pig talk – we also just had fun and that was great. However the serious pig discussions were greatly appreciated as well. If there is anyone who thinks they might want to know about camp – they should apply. You get a chance to learn about everything the pork industry has going on and see for yourself.

Paige Dearrington Sapulpa, Okla.

I had a great time. I learned more about the pork industry and the production and slaughter process. It was fun to see how large hog farms work. The sow farm tour was my favorite part. It was interesting to see how they care for the pigs and how they had separate areas for gestation and farrowing. It was interesting to see how they euthanize the animals and the care they take even in that process. I really liked how everyone bonded over the week. The talks on the bus and during practices were great. I liked getting to know everyone.

Katelyn Pierce Woodward, Okla.

Jaclyn McCormick Ponca City, Okla. Zachary Guy | Meeker, Okla. I always knew that there was a lot of differences in show hogs and commercial business but I never thought about how many protections would be put into place to allow for the pigs to live a healthy and productive life. I thought working in the pork industry would be a dirty job. I realize that they honestly and deeply do care about raising and providing for the animals. The barns are so much cleaner than I ever expected. • 17

Focus on Youth

Continually building leaders 4-H and FFA students practice public speaking at the Youth 4 Pork Speech Contest When was the last time you spoke in public? Did your hands get sweaty and your heart speed up? How did you learn public speaking? If you are like the many 4-H and FFA members, you learned it through contests discussing agriculturally related topics. Many great American speakers were trained through these programs. okPORK is proud to be a part of the system which helps young adults test and hone their public speaking abilities through the Youth 4 Pork speech contest each summer. This year, the overall winner of the Youth 4 Pork speech contest also attended the 2015 Youth Leadership Camp. Piper Merritt of Owasso FFA chose a topic she admits is close to her heart. okPORK talked with Merritt about her experience with the speech contest. 18 • Oklahoma Pork Council

Read the interview on the next page. The winners in the other Youth 4 Pork catagories were: Junior 4H: Gentry Squires of Kingfisher, Okla. Sr. 4H: Serena Woodard of Eufaula Jr. FFA: Jacob Grellner of Cushing Sr. FFA: Piper Merritt of Owasso. okPORK chooses to support our communities through 4-H and FFA projects each year. No matter if the members are learning about pigs through livestock judging or speech contests – both paths help to create leaders among their peers. Confidence, knowledge and hard work go into every 4-H or FFA project and the Oklahoma pork industry looks forward to seeing these students stream into the work force as they grow into full blown leaders. •

Top of page (L to R): Youth 4 Pork Winners, Gentry Squires, Jacob Grellner, Sereana Woodward and Piper Merritt. Above: Tina Falcon, okPORK board member awards Jacob Grellner for his Youth 4 Pork Speech.

with Piper Merritt okPORK: What was the topic you chose to build your speech on? Merritt: My topic was State Question 777 also known as the Right to Farm: The Benefits for Oklahoma Agriculture overall and the specifically the Oklahoma pork industry. okPORK: What inspired you to choose this topic? Merritt: As a result of my time with Class IV of the okPORK Youth Leadership Camp, I learned an extensive amount of information. In addition, I learned about the importance of passing State Question 777 and why it was important to support the people who are involved with agriculture in our state. I believed it was a good topic to bring to such a broad platform as this speech contest where I could share information with others and ultimately help them to understand why we should pass this state question.

okPORK: What was your impression of the speech contest as a whole? Merritt: I thought the contest was an incredible opportunity. It was nice to have the chance to talk to the other 4-H and FFA members who are also passionate about the pork industry in Oklahoma. I felt nothing but support from the other contestants. I truly enjoyed getting to fellowship with the other contestants and share our areas of research. okPORK: Were you more nervous about sharing your speech the first time you gave it to the judges or when you spoke in front of everyone for the Overall competition? Merritt: I have always been told, even before I began public speaking, that if you are nervous it means that you care about what you are doing. Obviously, I was nervous as I got up to speak because

I feel as though this is a very important topic. So, yes I felt nervous both times I gave my speech, but probably on an equal level each time. okPORK: Why did you begin participating in speech contests? Merritt: Ever since I joined Owasso FFA in the eighth grade, I’ve always been blessed with role models who helped me to understand what a difference one person can make. I’ve learned that public speaking is possibly the most fundamental skill we can have as a young professional. Young leaders who can move into the work force already possessing the skill to speak in front of a crowd can start adding to their chosen career more quickly than those without. I believe that both 4-H and FFA does a great job of teaching public speaking to their members. •

Youth Judges are made at the OSU Big Three Judging Field Days As the morning dawns the smell of coffee and diesel fuel fill the parking lot at the Animal Science Arena in Stillwater, Okla. The last day of the Big Three Field Days is Swine Day. This year that day fell on July 17. Swine Field Day is the single longest running field day in the United States. Breeders once gathered to discuss what the industry needed and how they could selectively breed to fit those needs. The Oklahoma State University event evolved from the breeder’s meeting. This year agricultural education instructors flooded into town driving hundreds of young livestock enthusiasts. Taking the opportunity to welcome the amateur livestock judges, okPORK was happy to see so many smiling, if exhausted, faces in the crowd. “Welcoming the participants and sharing a little information about our

organization was the reason I was there,” okPORK Outreach Specialist Lloyd Hawkins said. “I was able to share some information about Youth Leadership Camp and other okPORK activities with the young people who often know little about what we do.” After the welcome and instructions, the students march into action learning more about how to decipher the small differences in the animals they are studying. They gain confidence in their understanding and skill in their handling. As each class is prioritized and placed, the students also learn about justifying their decisions, speaking and oral reasoning through “giving reasons” to judges with more experience. They are scored on their ability to explain their decision and often given pointers on how to improve on this skill.

Each step of the process, from deciding to go to the field day to being part of the team, from conquering the fear of defending your choices to a stranger to supporting your team member who didn’t do so well makes for a stronger 4H or FFA member. okPORK is proud to support the Swine Field Day each summer as well as the clubs and chapters who attend. It isn’t hard to understand why the experience is so popular or why so many colleges and universities are happy to accept former 4H and FFA members. The life skills learned at events such as this one provide the foundation for skills needed in every job across the nation. Are you excited to see what the young livestock enthusiasts are capable of as they mature and join the work force? •

• 19

WHAT’S GOING ON WITH OKPORK During the last several weeks okPORK has been all over the place. Have you kept up with everything? If not, here are a few highlights. Whole Hawg days: For the last 31 summers, Eufaula, Okla., has held the Whole Hawg Days. This year the festival was held July 23-25 and included a cook-off, rodeo, parade, poker run, craft fair and a car show. Outreach Specialist Lloyd Hawkins and long-time okPORK friend and chef Eddie Hartwick (pictures far left) went to help judge the barbecue competition which included 28 teams. “The people involved from the town are really into it,” Hartwick said. “Almost all of the teams in the competition are local. Everyone from town and everyone who comes to the lake for the weekend from the city go to Whole Hawg Days.”

AACS deployment: How does okPORK send folks out of the country? We use the smoker and help make the party better! The 970th AACS deployed to the United Arab Emirates for 120 days, but not without some pork loin first. Congressman Bridenstine (pictured right) stopped by as well and enjoyed the food as well as the fellowship.

Yukon Rodeo: Who doesn’t love a rodeo on a hot summer night? okPORK jumped at the chance to donate some pork burgers to the Yukon Round Up Club. August 2-3 if you went to the Round-Up Club arena not only could you buy a pork burger to support the rodeo or watch a calf scramble, but you could also see some of the top cowboys and cowgirls showing off their skills. Above: Lloyd Hawkins (right) takes a moment out of serving pork to visit with okPORK board member, Phil Oliphant who came to Yukon to enjoy the rodeo. 20 • Oklahoma Pork Council

SQ 777 panel: okPORK Executive Director Roy Lee Lindsey attended the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association annual conference at the Reed Center in Midwest City on July 24. He joined two others – Rep. Scott Biggs and Glenn Coffee – on a panel discussing State Question 777, also known as Right to Farm. The panel was moderated by okPORK Distinguished Service recipient Ron Hays. Each of the panelists had a chance to introduce themselves, answered questions from the moderator and answered questions from the crowd.

Board Retreat/Strategic Planning: Each summer the okPORK Board of Directors plans a two-day meeting. Beyond providing a chance for the Board to get to know each other and planning for the upcoming year, this year a strategic planning session was incorporated. The Prasino Group helped guide the group through a planning session which will help guide okPORK through the next five years. During the next five years Oklahoma will prove it is the best place to raise baby pigs. If you would like more information, please contact the okPORK office. In addition to the five-year planning session, a discussion about how okPORK plans to raise money for the Yes on SQ777 initiative. James McSpadden and Roy Lee Lindsey helped to discuss the topic as well as Glenn Coffee, who is the person providing leadership to the Oklahoma Farmers Care coalition. It was a productive two days and the okPORK Board and staff are looking forward to the years to come. • 21

Easy Back to School Recipes Scrambled Egg Muffins 1/2 pound bulk pork sausage | 12 eggs |1/2 cup chopped onion | 1/4 cup chopped green pepper | 1/2 teaspoon salt | 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder | 1/4 teaspoon pepper | 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese Preheat oven to 350°. In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add onion, green pepper, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Stir in sausage and cheese. Spoon by 1/3 cupfuls into muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min. YIELD:12 servings

Freeze option: Cool baked egg muffins. Cover and place on waxed paper-lined baking sheets and freeze until firm. Transfer to resealable plastic freezer bags; return to freezer. To use, place in greased muffin pan, cover loosely with foil and reheat in a preheated 350° oven until heated through. Or, microwave each muffin on high 30-60 seconds or until heated through.

Cesar Sandwich 3/4 Pound cooked pork roast, thinly sliced * | 3 Cups romaine lettuce, chopped 1/2 Cup caesar salad dressing | 1/4 Cup parmesan cheese, grated | 1 8-Inch focaccia, round Toss lettuce with dressing and cheese, set aside. Slice focaccia horizontally; cut into 4 wedges. Layer pork and then lettuce on focaccia bottoms. Place focaccia tops over lettuce. * Use leftover Peppered Pork Roast or carved deli ham

Pork and Pasta Skillet Supper 1 Pound ground pork | 1 Medium onion, chopped | 1 14 1/2-Oz can pasta-ready tomatoes | 1 8-Oz can tomato sauce | 1 Small yellow squash, or zucchini, sliced into half moons | 1 1/2 Cups penne pasta, hot cooked, or other small pasta shape Heat nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and onion; cook and stir until evenly browned. Stir in tomatoes and tomato sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cook for 5 minutes. Stir in squash and pasta. Cook for 2-5 minutes or until heated through.

TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 20min. YIELD: 4 servings

22 • Oklahoma Pork Council

Click here for online Membership Form

Check membership type:  Producer  Producer ($75)

 Friend ($75)

910 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 380 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73104-3206 405-232-3781office 888-729-7675 toll free 405-232-3862 fax

 Associate ($200)

COMPLETE AND RETURN THIS FORM TO OPC WITH YOUR MEMBERSHIP PAYMENT. PLEASE PRINT CLEARLY! Membership Description Producer: Individuals, partnerships, corporations or firms that are actively engaged in the production of swine in Oklahoma. Friend: Extension educators, agriculture education instructors, local businessmen, others supporting OPC and Oklahoma’s pork industry. Associate: Feed companies, veterinary suppliers, pork product manufacturers, etc.

Name: Address: City, State & Zip: Phone:


E-mail: Spouse Name: Company/Farm Name:

County: ___________________________

District:  East  West  At Large (out of state) ___________________________________________________________________________________ Describe your operation:  Independent  Corporate  Contract  Show pig or purebred

Type of production:  Farrow only # of sows __________________  Farrow to feeder # of sows __________________  Farrow to finish # of sows __________________  Nursery only # of pigs ___________________  Finisher # of hogs __________________  Other (please describe)________________________

Payment Method  Cash

 Check (Payable to OPC)

Credit Card:  Visa

 MasterCard

 Discover

# ________________________ Expiration Date _____________ Signature ________________________ Address and Zip Code where credit card bill is mailed ___________________________________________

PAC Contributions The okPORK Political Action Committee (PAC) allows us to help with the election of friends of agriculture for state political office. The OPC will use your contribution to manage issues of benefit to the Oklahoma pork industry.

Please check all that apply & sign below!  Please commit ALL of my membership dues to okPORK’s Political Action Committee. (If you do not check here, your dues will stay in the OPC Membership fund.)  I would also like to contribute $ ________ to okPORK’s Political Action Committee. The contribution was freely and voluntarily given by me from my personal property. I have not directly or indirectly been compensated or reimbursed for the contribution.







FOR OFFICE USE ONLY Date received __________

Cash ________

Update: Membership ________

Check # ________

Pork Pages ________

Amount received $________

E-Pork Partner ________ • 23


901 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 380 Oklahoma City, OK 73104-3206

Chili Rub Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Prep: 10 minutes | Cooking: 8 hours | Serves: 8 3 pound boneless blade pork roast, or sirloin roast 2 tablespoons chili powder 1 & ½ teaspoons salt ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 tablespoon canola oil, or other neutral-flavored oil ½ cup chicken broth

Line a 9- by 13-inch baking pan with foil and place the pork in the pan. In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, salt, and cayenne. Rub the mixture over all sides of the meat, pressing it to adhere (if the meat is tied together with twine or netting, just rub the seasoning right over it). Set aside. In a large skillet over medium-high heat warm the oil. Add the pork and brown on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the meat to a slow cooker. Add the broth to the skillet scraping up any browned bits. Add the broth to the slow cooker, cover, and cook until the pork is very tender, 6 to 8 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high. Transfer the meat to a cutting board and let rest 1O to 15 minutes. Use two forks to shred meat into bite-sized pieces. Moisten/season with cooking juices to taste.

okPORK PAGES Fall 2015  

Official publication of the Oklahoma Pork Council

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