DES MOINES – Visitors to Des Moines, Iowa will get a good dose of politics and pork between now and the 2020 caucus.

The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) launched a campaign aimed at countering alleged violations of food labeling law by manufacturers of alternative proteins. The ads appear on digital displays at the Des Moines International Airport.

“As you know the Iowa Caucus is approaching,” said Jim Monroe, senior director of communications at NPPC. “We timed the placement of the ads with the heavy traffic, including media, expected before, during and after the caucus. We are also promoting the ads on social media. It has yielded a great response and we are evaluating options for expanding the campaign.”

Earlier this month, Impossible Foods added Impossible Pork and Impossible Sausage to its product portfolio. Impossible Pork comes in a ground format and has 16 grams of protein, 13 grams of fat (7 grams saturated fat) and 220 calories per 4-oz. serving.

The problem, according to NPPC, is that the Impossible product isn’t pork and shouldn’t be labeled as such. Following the announcement of the pork facsimile, Dr. Dan Kovich, director of science and technology for the NPPC, said: “What’s impossible is to make pork from plants. This is a brazen attempt to circumvent decades of food labeling law and centuries of precedence. Any adjective placed in front of the word pork can only refine it, not redefine it. It’s not pork. It’s not pork sausage. It can’t be labeled as such.”

NPPC has expressed support for competitive markets and consumer choice. However, the organization also is working to understand the products and how they are manufactured while ensuring that they are regulated and labeled so that consumers know what the plant-based facsimiles contain and how they are made.