COLUMBUS – The 2006 Ohio Pork Congress held in Columbus, Feb. 8 attracted many visitors and honored Ohio’s pork industry standouts.
The event showcased the latest trends and technologies in Ohio’s pork industry. In addition to the many trade show attractions, more than 100 producers attended the awards presentation at this year’s Congress.
Pickaway County pork producer Mike Bayes received the Pork Industry Excellence Award for his work at the local, state and national level.
Bayes has been a member of the Ohio Pork Producers Council and the National Pork Board. He served on the Ohio Pork Producers Council board of directors and as president of the council in 1995 and 1996.
He has also served on many council committees and he has served for six years as Ohio’s first member on the National Pork Board.
Bayes served as a swine extension associate at The Ohio State University from 1996-2002 and is currently assisting with swine nutritional research at the OSU Swine Barn in Columbus.
Bayes, along with his wife, Kathy, owns and operates a farrow-to-finish hog operation near Orient in northern Pickaway County.
Strickler honored. Virgil Strickler, general manager of the Ohio Expo Center, received the pork council’s Pork Industry Service Award.
Strickler started as agriculture director of the Ohio State Fair in 1993 and has continued to support the pork industry through Ohio State Fair activities. He provides support for the meat cooler in the swine barn, sow and litter display, pork stands and hog shows.
Young farmer award. Chris Ott of Fulton County won the Outstanding Young Pork Producer award was for his accomplishments in the production and promotion of pork.
Ott became involved in the pork industry when he was in high school. Today, Chris has a 1,000-head full slat, deep pit barn and a 300-head straw barn. He is also employed full-time by Archbold Elevator , where all of his pigs are contracted. His responsibilities include overseeing two sow units, nurseries, finishers and scheduling of pig flow.
He is a member of the Ohio Pork Producers Council and takes part in many of their educational and industry certification meetings. He recently participated in the National Pork Board’s Operation Main Street where he was trained to speak to local groups about modern pork production.
In addition to his work, he is involved in his community and participates in mission trips with his church. Chris and his wife, Becky, have three sons.
The Elite County Award went to Clinton County for their efforts in promoting pork during the past year.
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