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Pork checkoff rate reduced to 40 cents per $100

WASHINGTON -- The pork checkoff rate has been reduced to 40 cents per $100 of value.

The nickel reduction took effect Sept. 30.

Elected representatives of the pork producers and importers who pay the checkoff voted to recommend the rate reduction during their annual meeting in March. The recommendation was sent to the U.S. Agriculture Department, which gave its approval and set the effective date

The checkoff is collected on the sale of all domestic and imported market hogs, feeder pigs and breeding stock. An amount equivalent to the checkoff on those animals is collected on imported pork and pork products.

In March, National Pork Board officials estimated the reduction in checkoff rate would result in reducing checkoff assessments by $5 million to $6 million annually.

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"An 11 percent reduction in the checkoff's promotion, research and consumer information programs obviously is going to have some impact on those programs," said Dave Culbertson, a pork producer from Geneseo, Ill., who is also one of the 15 producers serving on the National Pork Board and chairman of the board's budget committee. "The impact of the reduction will result in reduced programming. However, we believe that prioritization of programs and use of reserves, together with good management, will help us minimize the impact of reduced revenues."

The checkoff rate of 45 cents per $100 value had been in effect since 1995.

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