October 23-25th, ISU hosted PORK 101, a three-day, hands-on educational program to help participants learn about quality and consistency issues facing the pork industry. The program is hosted by American Meat Science Association in cooperation with the National Pork Board and sponsored by Merck Animal Health.
This event included insight on differences in pork carcasses, pork primal and processed pork products due to quality variation. Participants had the chance to evaluate eight live hogs before they were processed. Dr. Chris Cassady, Lecturer and Livestock Judging Coach said “Our goal in the live portion was to have complete transparency of the production side of the industry. We were trying to show consumers why producers do what they do.” During the live portions participants learned about differences in leanness, total pounds and muscle development. During the class, the animals were processed where participants learned about grading, food safety and product processing. Dr. Cassady went on to say “It’s important that consumers understand what different cuts of meat look like on a live pig and how these factors affect the end product.”
The class was co-sponsored by the American Association of Meat Processors (AAMP), American Society of Animal Science (ASAS), North American Meat Institute Foundation (NAMIF) and the Southwest Meat Association (SMA).