Show Pigs

Ranking twelfth in the U.S. for pork production, Michigan’s swine industry is extremely diverse and has a robust show pig industry. Youth in Michigan can become involved in the pork industry by participating in various events including jackpot shows, educational opportunities and county fairs. Involvements in these events help foster the growth and future of the pork industry in Michigan.

As swine exhibition in Michigan grows, efforts are being made to provide producers, show organizers and youth with information. This page is the “go to” resource for information on official identification, health management and contacts.

Official Identification

According to Public Act 466 of the Animal Industry Act official identification for exhibition swine is required by state law. The purpose of official identification is to help the state track swine if a disease outbreak occurs, this is called traceability. This includes all swine being shown at exhibitions, including county fairs, jackpot shows, birthing exhibits and other events. Official identification is imprinted with a nationally unique official animal identification number and bears the official U.S. shield.

Please note: 2021 MDARD will be changing the requirements for official ID for swine. This means guidelines for Official ID for exhibition swine will be updated for the 2021 Exhibition year.

More information on official identification is found below: 

How can I get a premise number for my farm? 

A premise identification is a number issued to your farm when you register with the Michigan Department of Agriculture. By registering as a premise your farm will be listed with the National Animal Identification System, which increases traceability. This information is not shared with other sources. If you would like to obtain a Premise Identification Number or if you have questions, contact the Animal ID department at Michigan Department of Agriculture at 800-292-3939.

USDA approved Manufactures of 840 tags 

The following companies are approved to manufacture official Identification 840 tags. You will need to find a distributor of these tags in order to purchase them. Please note that official identificaion tags cannot be ordered directly from the manufacturer.

  • Allflex
  • Y-Tex Cooperation
  • Destron Fearing 

Where can I buy 840 tags?

Various companies are approved distributors of 840 official identification ear tags. Below you will find a limited list of distributors. Please contact your preferred distributor to see if they carry 840 tags. 

Contact information sheet for assistance with official identification or disease management 

Health and Disease Management

When working with exhibition swine every effort should be made to manage the health of the animals prior to, during and after exhibition.  Minimizing disease risks through proper care, transportation and a herd health plan will help youth producers and exhibition event organizers avoid a disease outbreak.  Information on vaccination, weigh in and tagging event protocols, along with suggestions on biosecurity and show procedures are below:

Youth Pork Quality Assurance

Youth PQA Plus Training and Certification - The Youth PQA Plus program is geared for youth ages 8-19, who are involved with the pork industry. This program defines best method practices for improved pig well-being and pork quality, teaching youth 10 good production practices for good pig care. This program also encompasses the We Care Initiative supported by the Pork Checkoff program. Youth can become certified in the program by attending a face-to-face session with a certified advisor or by completing an online tutorial developed by the Pork Checkoff program.   

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