Study highlights economic impact of pork industry
By CHAD THOMPSON
The pork industry has been a valuable economic contributor to the Fort Dodge region even before it was announced that Prestage Foods of Iowa would be building a multi-million dollar pork processing plant five miles south of Eagle Grove, according to Gregg Hora, president-elect for the Iowa Pork Producers Association.
According to a recently released study commissioned by the Iowa Farm Bureau in December 2016, the pork industry in the counties of Calhoun, Hamilton, and Webster accounted for a combined $20 million in state and local taxes.
The studies are based on the United States Department of Agriculture 2012 Census.
Calhoun, Hamilton, and Webster were three of the 25 counties in Iowa commissioned for the study, according to Hora.
Hora said all three counties rank in the top 50 for pork production in Iowa.
The study shows the number of hog farms and the hog inventory for each of the three counties.
Number of hog farms: 88
Hog inventory: 359,106
Number of hog farms: 68
Hog inventory: 647,537
– Webster County
Number of hog farms: 55
Hog inventory: 185,596
The three counties combined for an estimated $765 million in sales.
About 3,500 jobs were created in the three counties as a result of the pork industry, according to Hora.
“I think these numbers are important so we can look at where we are with production and the economic impact of pigs,” Hora said.