COLUMBUS — Williams County Pork Producers received the Pork Promoter of the Year Award from the Ohio Pork Producers Council for their promotional efforts during 2008.
The award was presented at the Ohio Pork Congress and recognizes an individual, family, organization or company who excels in promoting the pork industry on a local, regional or state level.
The Williams County Pork Producers was established in 1978 and celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2008. The organization has given to local FFA organizations, provided 4-H camp scholarships and offered college scholarships.
The group also supported the youth by purchasing animals during the Junior Fair sale.
The Ohio Pork Producers Council presented Jeff Karshner of Clark County with the Service Award.
Karshner is the senior regional manager of direct hogs for United Producers. His division handled 1,165,000 head of hogs in 2008.
Karshner has developed a service-oriented division that has been able to work with pork producers and packers with the goal of success for both.
Industry Excellence Award
Irv Bell of Muskingum County was recognized with the Ohio Pork Industry Excellence Award.
The Pork Industry Excellence Award is given to a pork producer or pork producing family who has made an outstanding contribution to the swine industry.
Bell was selected for his willingness to give his time, money and talent to the promotion of pork on a local, state and national level.
Bell currently serves as president of the PGI Group, a group of pork producers who share information and marketing strategies.
The Bell Farm is currently a farrow-to-finish operation with 850 sows. The Bells also farm 1,400 acres in the Muskingum County area.
The farm has been recognized in the past for its outstanding stewardship and conservation practices.
Manager of the Year
Dave Owens of Fayette County received the Ohio Pork Producers Council’s Manager of the Year Award. The award recognizes swine managers for an outstanding production program and for leadership in swine and community organizations.
Owens is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a degree in agriculture. He has been associated with the pork industry his entire life and has served as Manager of the Swine Herd at the Western Branch of OARDC since 1986.
Owens has been instrumental in the development and progression of the Sow Productivity Index Program, which progressed from basic research to being adopted widely in the genetic improvement in the pork industry.
Ohio Pork Industry Queen
Katie Miller of Henry County was crowned the 2009 Ohio Pork Industry Queen. She is the daughter of Mike and Deb Miller of Napoleon.
Miller is a sophomore at The Ohio State University where she is majoring in agriculture education. She is active in her 4-H club where she has held several different offices.
Emily Johnson of Fairfield County was named first runner-up in the contest. She is the daughter of Phil and Sherri Johnson of Carroll.
Johnson is a second-year student at The Ohio State University ATI in Wooster.
Miller will represent Ohio’s pork industry in the coming year at numerous promotional events and activities around the state.
Taste of Elegance
Chef Eddie Tancredi of Rosendale’s in Columbus took first place honors in the Ohio Pork Producers Council’s Taste of Elegance competition.
The contest honors chefs with the best original pork entree prepared with Cargill’s White Marble Farms pork.
Chef Tancredi was presented the title of Chef Par Excellence, $1,000 and a trophy.
Superior Chef honors went to Chef Scott Pierce of Handke’s Cuisine in Columbus and Premier Chef went to Chef Kazushige “Honda” of the Otani Restaurant and Sushi Bar in Columbus.
Chef Deborah Miller of Hide Away Country Inn in Bucyrus was selected as the People’s Choice Award winner. This award is voted on by attendees for the most visually appealing entree.