The Pork Leadership Institute took place recently, and Channing Gooden hog producer and North Carolina Pork Council board member from Elizabeth Town, North Carolina, recapped his experience with Special Correspondent for Southern Farm Network Don Wick:
This Pork Leadership Institute is a training program, what made you take the time to participate in it?
“I wanted to be able to be the voice, if I needed to be, for the industry that I grew up in and I want my children to grow up in.”
Are you doing things at home that utilize this education?
“I am active in my county livestock association and I am a member of the North Carolina Pork Council’s Board of Directors. I try to use every opportunity to educate the public and do some farm tours when needed. We have had a few state legislators on our farm and let them see our barns and what we do there, how we deal with waste and every aspect of our operation and animals.”
What is the message to them?
“We want them to know what we do on the farm. Many are so far removed they don’t know what we do and its changed a lot over the years and we want to educate them on how much better we are.”
How has Pork Leadership Institute helped you in this process?
“It has shown me a lot about every aspect of pork production from where I am in the production part to exporting, the legislative side, and every aspect across the board. The class itself is very diverse, everyone from the large producers that contract or work for production companies to guys that may have just a few pigs.”
Would you recommend Pork Leadership Institute to others?
“Its been a great opportunity. I have met people from all over the country and been able to talk to them about how they do things.”