The National Pork Board (NPB) has launch a new pork industry crisis text news service, Pork Crisis Alert, which it said will immediately deliver essential information to U.S. pork producers in the event of a major industry-wide emergency.
“Every day, America’s pork producers are busy on their farms and may not always have immediate access to information that could impact their operation,” said NPB president Derrick Sleezer, a pig farmer from Cherokee, Iowa. “Disease outbreaks and other emergency situations can spread quickly, so America’s pig farmers need a news service to notify them immediately and enable them to take early action to safeguard their farms.”
When a pork industry-wide emergency is declared, Pork Crisis Alert will text instructions to farmers on how to access information and other critical resources online or by calling the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-7675. Pork Crisis Alert is just one element of the pork checkoff’s overall risk management program, which was defined in the strategic plan introduced early in 2015.
Pork Crisis Alert texts will be used strictly in the event of a true industry-wide emergency and will never be used for activities unrelated to emergency communications, NPB said. This database of subscribers will never be used for marketing or shared with any third parties. The system will also be tested twice each year to ensure operational accuracy for pig farmers who enroll in the program.
“It’s easy to sign up by texting ’PorkCrisis’ to 97296,” Sleezer said. “I encourage all pork producers and farm employees to opt in to receive these important alerts. The program is like insurance in the sense that, while we hope we never need it, it is reassuring to have state-of-the-art communications resources at our fingertips.”
The service is free of charge to all participants, although message and data rates may apply, depending on the cellular phone plan.