December 20, 2011 (Des Moines, IA)- On a warm Saturday afternoon last July, while stocking canned bacon on the shelves of a bomb shelter at an undisclosed location, organizers of the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival, “Baconpocalypse Now: I love the smell of bacon in the morning” began to question whether hoarding was the right thing to do.

“Look guys, we know that fears of the 2012 apocalypse could lead to a massive bacon shortage at any time,” John Tiffany, Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival historian explained. “But what if our hoarding sparks a bacon-buying frenzy that could have been avoided?”

Seth Hall, Chief Bacon Enjoyment Officer, agreed. “John has a point. We can’t possibly purchase enough frozen pork belly futures contracts to feed 4,000 festival attendees without creating panic in the markets and pushing retail bacon prices over $10 a pound.” The room went quiet. Seth continued. “Dudes, we need to look at this problem from a global perspective. I’m talkin’ synergies, accountability, core competencies, a paradigm shift, a Win/Win–” Brooks Reynolds, Chair of the Iowa Bacon Board and festival co-founder, interrupted, shouting, “A strategic partner! We need to go straight to the bacon source and find a pork producer with enough hogs to satisfy our bacon needs for the next 20 years, apocalypse or not.”

One month later, at his Bacon-On-A-Stick stand at the Iowa State Fair, Reynolds couldn’t help but notice a sea of people marching down the concourse wearing black shirts. As the group came closer, the green and red logo came into focus – Iowa Select Farms. “It was like a sign from God,” Reynolds recalled.

As the largest Iowa-based pork producer, Iowa Select Farms was celebrating an employee family outing – 2,200 people in all. Reynolds seized the opportunity to gain an introduction to Jeff Hansen, CEO of Iowa Select Farms. The two exchanged contact information and just last week, Iowa Select Farms signed on as the presenting sponsor of the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival.

Asked to explain the logic of the partnership, Jeff Hansen, CEO of Iowa Select Farms said, “Look, Iowa is number one in pork production. Our company and employees have always taken great pride in that. So how could all of us at Iowa Select Farms sit idly by while the organizers of the best bacon festival in the world lose sleep over the fears of a bacon shortage? All of us at Iowa Select Farms are proud to support this event and ensure that there is enough bacon to keep the celebration alive.”

With the presenting sponsor for 2012 secured and risks of a bacon shortage avoided, tickets for the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival, “Baconpocalypse Now: I love the smell of bacon in the morning” presented by Iowa Select Farms are set to go on sale exclusively online at www.blueribbonbaconfestival.com beginning at high noon on Thursday, December 29th. The festival will be held at the Varied Industries building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sat., February 18th.

Organizers plan to accommodate 4,000 bacon lovers. Tickets are $45 for general admission into the main event, entitling the holder to a commemorative T-shirt, koozie, a wide array of bacon-inspired delights from various restaurants, unlimited bacon samples at the Bacon Showcase, live music and bacon educational lectures.

Other ticket options include:

  • $625 for a reserved table for 10
  • $135 for a general admission ticket paired with a seat at the Bacon Elegance Dinner on the evening of February 15. Due to 2010’s quick sellout, the maximum general admission ticket purchase will be two (2) per order.

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