Smithfield will have free pork rib samples, giveaways and grilling demonstrations throughout the competition, which takes place Aug. 31 through Sept. 3. More than 80 of the participating teams in the barbecue competition will be Smithfield pitmasters or members of Smithfield’s Committed Cooks program.
The list of pitmasters includes World Champion Tuffy Stone, Melissa Cookston, Jeff Stehney, Sterling Ball, Ernest Servantes and 2016 American Royal Open Grand Champion Darren Warth.
Smithfield is also proud that Stehney and Cookston will both be inducted into the 2017 class of the Barbecue Hall of Fame on Saturday, Sept. 2.
“This is one of the toughest barbecue competitions in the world, and it was such an honor to take home the title of Grand Champion of the Open Competition last year for the second time,” said Warth of Iowa’s Smokey D’s BBQ. “In 2016, I won over the judges using Smithfield Fresh Pork, so my goal is to do it again this year!”
On Saturday, from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., event attendees can visit the Smithfield booth (Space #310) to check out live grilling demos, and enjoy giveaways and free samples of Smithfield Prime St. Louis Style Spareribs prepared by Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que.
“Smithfield is committed to investing in competition barbecue, and it feels great to be back once again at the American Royal with so many amazing pitmasters cooking with Smithfield Fresh Pork because they know the quality is what they need to win,” said Emily Detwiler, director of fresh pork marketing for Smithfield Foods.