A new year means a change in leadership for the Iowa Pork Producers Association (IPPA). As Al Wulfekuhle passes the torch to Curtis Meier to lead the state’s pork association, it’s a good time to reflect on the successes and challenges of the past year, and look forward to what lies ahead in 2017.

Both leaders say that the two new packing plants being built, the Triumph/Seaboard plant in Sioux City currently under construction and the Prestage Foods plant in Wright County where construction begins this year, will provide more competition for hogs.

"Landing the two packing plants here in Iowa has been a big success," Meier said.

The packing plants come at a time when Iowa pork production hit a record high 22.4 million hogs in the December...