World Pork Expo seminars offer ideas and innovation

World Pork Expo seminars offer ideas and innovation

Pork professionals attending the 2017 World Pork Expo will have the opportunity to hear the most up-to-date production information and ideas, as well as have access to world-class experts during a wide range of free educational seminars June 7 and 8.

Attendees can participate in more than 15 presentations covering topics such as nutrition management, understanding consumers, data collection and more. The seminars are just a sampling of the many events presented at this year’s World Pork Expo, brought to you by the National Pork Producers Council, June 7-9 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines.

“The Expo seminars always present a wealth of information that producers can use to run efficient and responsible pork production businesses,” says NPPC President Ken Maschhoff, an Illinois pork producer. “I would encourage producers to bring their family and employees to expo. It’s a great place to expose them to the latest innovations and learn about research and new developments that they can apply when they return home.”

Business seminars address pigs, consumers and technology
This year’s business seminars will outline new ways to manage swine herds from birth to market, as well as review technologies that can help producers stay competitive.

Kicking off the business seminars on Wednesday, June 7, from 10 a.m. to noon, the nutritional aspects of feeding challenged piglets will be covered, followed by a discussion on how fluctuating grain and protein markets influence decision-making and pig production.

From 1 p.m. to 4:45 p.m., three different seminars will be presented. The first will be a panel discussion on the economic power of pig health, including best management practices and guidance on managing stressful periods, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. The discussion will expand into proactive pig care from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., when producers and other experts share tips to reduce pre-weaning mortality, raise heavier pigs and increase income. Wrapping up the day, from 4 p.m. to 4:45 p.m., producers, pig caretakers and company personnel will share their experiences using the first isotonic protein drink for pigs.

On Thursday, June 8, the business seminars get an early start, with “Farm to Fork: Healthy Animals, Healthy Food, Healthy People,” presented from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. The seminar will focus on bridging the gap between modern pork production and consumers’ confidence in the pork products they buy. It will be presented again from 10:15 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and each session will allow time for audience questions.

From 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., smart-barn controllers, electronic sow feeding, mobile-data collection and production software will dominate the afternoon as experts discuss new-world technologies for pork producers. The seminar will occur in segments that will outline steps to a seamless, integrated system of hardware and software for pork operations.

PORK Academy provides answers for today and tomorrow
Rounding out Expo’s seminar lineup is PORK Academy, with 10 additional free seminars presented by the Pork Checkoff. The PORK Academy sessions run throughout Wednesday and Thursday from 9:15 a.m. to around 3:30 p.m.

Wednesday’s seminar topics will include pork quality research, social media ideas for pork producers, employee compensation trends, feed-grade antibiotic alternatives and third-party audits for the farm. On Thursday, the discussions will again begin with pork quality, followed by the Veterinary Feed Directive, sow housing tools, business continuity and the Secure Pork Supply Plan, as well as U.S. pork exports and global trade prospects.

Pork Checkoff also provides a weather, crop and hog market outlook session on both Wednesday and Thursday in their hospitality tent at 12:30 p.m.

Both the business seminars and PORK Academy will take place in the Varied Industries Building.

Schedule plenty of time to take in all of Expo’s events
“Expo is a great place to interact with pork experts from veterinarians to researchers to allied industry to fellow producers,” Maschhoff says. “Anyone involved with pork production needs to spend some time at World Pork Expo.

Always a highlight, World Pork Expo features the world’s largest pork-specific trade show, with more than 320,000 square feet of exhibit space and featuring hundreds of companies from around the world. Trade show hours run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, June 7, and Thursday, June 8, as well as from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, June 9.

The World Pork Expo Junior National youth hog show and educational events begin on Monday, June 5, and run through the week. An open show takes place on Friday, June 9, with breeding stock sales on Saturday, June 10, from 8 a.m. until approximately noon. Attendees also can consider signing up for the golf tournament and industry tours for additional networking and educational opportunities.

Attendees will find no shortage of mouthwatering grilled pork, including free lunches served up at the Big Grill by the Tama County Pork Producers.

Visit the website for updates on event schedules and room availability at official World Pork Expo hotels. Through May, the website also offers convenient online registration for the discounted rate of $10 per adult (ages 12 and up), which covers all three days of Expo. Registration will be available on site for $20 per adult, with a special rate of $10 for people arriving on Friday.

For the most up-to-date details about this year’s World Pork Expo, be sure to connect with expo on Twitter and Facebook by following expo pages, tagging expo in your posts and using the hashtag #WPX17!