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October's National Pork Month

02 October 2007

US - Iowa’s pork producers are celebrating National Pork Month in October by working to improve consumer acceptance of pork and reminding Iowans of an important 2006 report by the United States Department of Agriculture.

USDA reported in May of last year that families own or manage 98 percent of the farms in America. The report defined family farm as a proprietorship, partnership or family operation that does not have a hired manager. In Iowa, many of the pork farms are run by third- and fourth-generation families.

Of the total number of farms, 86.8 percent are owned by individuals/families or are a sole proprietorship, according to USDA. Another 5.4 percent are family-held corporations and 6.4 percent are family partnerships. Just 0.4 percent of the operations are non-family corporations.

Pork producers are proud of the fact that the livestock has allowed them to sustain their family farms. In fact, pork production has allowed many young adults to stay in a family operation or return to the family farm.

Like nearly every other business or industry in the US, farming has changed over the past 30 years. New technology has allowed farmers to meet ever-growing demand for farm products. Also, improved production practices have allowed some family farms to expand their enterprises and become more successful financially.

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