Levi Meiwes’ red ribbon-winning hog apparently had an inkling of what was in store — it was about to be sold and soon will be packaged as ham, sausage and bacon.
When young Levi started to bring the hog into the show ring Thursday night, near the end of Allen County Fair’s annual livestock premium auction, it put up quite a fuss. A couple of adults were needed to help coax the hog into full public view.
The brouhaha must have excited bidders. They responded quickly and with fervor when Jack Franklin started the hog’s sale — the premium total quickly grew to $1,350.
Levi’s hog was one of 23 sold. All together, they drew bids of $18,650, or nearly $811 each.
Bidding was aggressive throughout the night. In addition to the 23 hogs, five lambs, 16 steers and 10 goats were sold.
Premium bids totaled $45,400, and were increased by Friends of 4-H adding money to each class and supporters also upping antes.
Total bids and average sales for categories other than hogs were: lambs, $2,600, $520; steers. $19,250, $1,203; goats, $4,900, $490.
Among lambs, Kaysha Elmenhorst’s reserve class champion Hampshire brought the highest bid at $700. Jillian Keller’s grand champion Simmental steer fetched a winning bid of $3,200. In goats, Reid Smith’s reserve champion meat goat drew a bid of $700, the same as Brandon McKarnin’s red ribbon-winning entry.
The top bid for hogs went to Carly Dreher’s crossbred reserve grand champion at $1,400, which also was the winning bid for Karlie Stephens’ blue ribbon crossbred.
The Meiwes hog wasn’t the only animal that had some reluctance about walking calmly into the show ring, but several meandered right in and posed for bidders. After each sale, the animal was either “shipped,” which meant it went to a packer, or was sent to custom processing of the buyer’s choice.
IN EACH category, pre-auction base bids are placed on animals, with their weight, and in some cases competition placing, determining the amount.
Auction participants then bid on the premium to be paid for each animal, which is above the base bid. Owners collect the premium plus base bid, which in Jillian Keller’s case, for having the grand champion steer, was $4,676.30.
The auction has been a feature of the fair since the early 1950s, which means it isn’t unusual for a previous seller to be on the other side of the ring and now a buyer.
Kent Thompson joined Franklin in crying the sale. Jackie McIntyre and Carla Nemecek helped with clerking.