The Hardin County Fair is announcing that all four swine champions tested negative for ractopamine following the 2020 Hardin County Fair. In collaboration with the fair veterinarian’s office and the processing facility, each animal’s kidney was collected for testing. These tests – commonly referred to as the “lifetime test” – evaluates the use of ractopamine throughout the animal’s life. Each exhibitor was required to produce an affidavit certifying that the animal hadn’t been fed ractopamine, the active ingredient in brand-name products like Paylean® and OptaFlexx®. Breeders were also required to submit an affidavit certifying the same.
“We said we were going to test as testing allowed, and that’s exactly what we did. Ractopamine is a banned substance at the Hardin County Fair. We believe that because of this, our fair saw one of the highest rebuy bids on hogs in Northwest Ohio,” said Charlie McCullough, Swine Committee Chairman. “We are proud of our exhibitors for abiding by this new guideline. We know this required altering feed programs and generated some uncertainty. Thank you for sticking with us.”
To avoid positive tests, all surfaces that hogs would come in contact with were deep-cleaned prior to the start of the fair to prevent ractopamine contamination.
More information on the ractopamine policy, resources on a ractopamine-free swine project, and more can be found at hardincountyfair.org/ractopamine.