National Pork Board Announces Staff Size Reduction

US - The NPB announced today that it is eliminating 18 staff positions in response to a prolonged slump in hog prices that has reduced revenues from the Pork Checkoff. The layoffs, from a staff of 96, are effective July 15.
calendar icon 30 June 2003
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"Many hog producers have been losing money over the past 18 months, which has turned out to be one of the most severe dips in the price cycle ever," said Steven D. Murphy, chief executive officer of the National Pork Board. "Producers have had to take a critical look at their own operations and they expect the same of their Checkoff organization."

Hog producers contribute 40 cents per $100 in sales to the Pork Checkoff each time they market an animal. The National Pork Board uses those funds to help build demand through programs such as the Pork. The Other White Meat® advertising campaign; to conduct production and consumer research, and to help consumers incorporate pork into their diets. The reduction in market prices paid to hog farmers, coupled with a 5-cent reduction in the Pork Checkoff rate approved in 2002, has resulted in a 17.5 percent reduction in the National Pork Board's budget in just two years. The National Pork Board budget in 2002 was approximately $57 million. The projected 2004 budget is approximately $47 million.

Murphy noted that technology advances, including new Internet tools, are helping the National Pork Board maintain producer programs with fewer full-time staff. "Our commitment to managing programs with producers' Checkoff investments is, if anything, firmer than ever," he said. "If it weren't, we would not be making these changes. We will strive to work smarter and to continue to seek new ways of doing business that are more efficient, freeing resources for the programs that yield the greatest results for producers.

"As painful as these staff cuts are, we believe they will enable us to maintain high-quality programs for producers."

Source: National Pork Board - 26th June 2003

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