The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) has announced three tours for people who want to experience Midwestern agriculture and hospitality before World Pork Expo opens in Des Moines, IA, on June 6. Pork producers from throughout the world can choose a two-day tour highlighting livestock, crops and agribusinesses, or single-day excursions featuring different agricultural destinations near Des Moines.

“These tours are a perfect way for Expo attendees to fully experience the diversity of agriculture here in the nation’s breadbasket,” says Bryan Humphreys, director of grassroots organization, LEADR, for NPPC. “Tour participants will have direct access to farm managers and agribusiness experts as they get to know fellow producers. And once the tours are finished, they will enjoy free admission to World Pork Expo.”

Showcasing U.S. agriculture

The Midwest Agriculture Highlights Tour on June 4-5 will take participants to see the locks-and-dam system that enables agricultural products to traverse the Mississippi River to the rest of the world. By popular demand, the group also will visit Cinnamon Ridge Farms, which feature 4,000 acres of corn and soybeans, wean-to-finish swine facilities, a beef operation and a dairy.

“At Cinnamon Ridge Farms, participants will be taken to a specially designed viewing room to see modern pig production firsthand without compromising the herd’s biosecurity,” says Humphreys. “Then they’ll finish the first day by enjoying a special dinner with area farmers and pork producers.”

The second day will feature a stop at the John Deere Pavilion museum, which has been recognized as the world’s most comprehensive agricultural exhibit.

Highlighting Genetics and Agribusiness

For those with limited schedules, two, one-day tours are available. On Monday, Iowa Agriculture Tour participants will go to one of the Midwest’s largest food-distribution companies as well as a feedmill for one of Christensen Farms’ large pork-production facilities. The final stop will be the newly remodeled College of Veterinary Medicine at Iowa State University.

The Tuesday-only Iowa Agribusiness Tour features stops at Swine Genetics International’s boar-reproduction facility and Pioneer Hi-Bred, a world-leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics. Attendees will enjoy lunch at The Machine Shed, which has been featured on the Travel Channel.

Reserving Your Seat on a Tour Bus

All three tours begin and end in Des Moines, and include bus transportation. Registration for the two-day Midwest Agriculture Highlights Tour, which includes four meals and hotel accommodations on Monday evening, is $300 per person.

Individuals can participate in either the Iowa Agriculture Tour or the Iowa Agribusiness Tour for $125 per person, or enjoy both one-day tours for a total of $200. Each tour includes a midday meal.

To register for any of these tours, all of which include free admission to World Pork Expo, go to www.worldpork.org and click on the “producer registration” button. Questions may be directed to Humphreys at humphreysb@nppc.org or (515) 864-7980.

Discovering More about World Pork Expo

To read more about these pre-Expo tours, go to www.worldpork.org, click on the “Producer” tab, then select “Industry Tour” from the Events & Activities pull-down menu.

Web site visitors also will find answers to frequently asked questions about traveling to World Pork Expo and the latest details about room availability at official Expo hotels. For more information, connect with World Pork Expo on Facebook and follow World Pork Expo on Twitter (use #NPPCWPX).

World Pork Expo takes place June 6-8 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines. More than 450 commercial exhibits will be on display from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, June 6, and Thursday, June 7, as well as from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, June 8. Breeding stock sales will continue on Saturday, June 9, from 8 a.m. until they’re completed (at approximately noon).

World Pork Expo, the world's largest pork-specific trade show, is brought to you by the National Pork Producers Council. On behalf of its members, NPPC develops and defends export markets, fights for reasonable legislation and regulation, and informs and educates legislators. For more information, visit www.nppc.org.