KANSAS CITY, MO. – To promote the versatility of pork, the National Pork Board (NPB) and the Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) announced the inclusion of two new categories that will be a part of a limited number of sanctioned barbecue cooking competition events in 2021. The Celebrate Real Pork Series will be a part of 14 KCBS competitions during its inaugural year, adding a pork chop contest to the standard categories of pork butt, pork ribs, beef brisket and chicken that are judged at all KCBS events. Additionally, for the Kid’s ‘Que competitions held at KCBS events throughout the year, a boneless pork chop category will be added for competitors in the 11 to 15 age range and ground pork will be offered as a new category for kids in the 10 and under competitions.

The new pork categories will add thousands of dollars in prize money to the designated events while promoting the winners and their recipes on the digital platforms of the NPB and the KCBS. The first Celebrate Real Pork Series event will be held May 2 during a competition event in Liberty, Ind.  

“We are proud to partner with the National Pork Board to add incremental opportunities to feature fresh pork at our sanctioned barbeque competitions,” said Emily Detwiler, chief executive officer of the KCBS. “We are delighted to encourage pitmasters of all experience levels to showcase their skill with one of America’s favorite backyard grilling proteins – the pork chop.”

She added that adding the new pork categories to the Kid’s ‘Que events is part of an effort to inspire the next generation of pitmasters.  

“These are exciting new contests for KCBS organizers and we know that our KCBS Certified Barbeque Judges will enjoy the additional challenge,” Detwiler said. 

“We’re looking forward to bringing these new competitions to KCBS events,” said Jim Murray, NPB’s national channel marketing and innovation manager. “The Celebrate Real Pork Series offers competitors an opportunity to think beyond the traditional competition pork cuts, and really challenge themselves and get creative.”

This past month, KCBS announced a similar partnership with the National Turkey Federation (NTF) will continue into its second year. The Turkey Smoke series, which kicked off in 2020, will be a part of 17 US competitions sanctioned by KCBS in 2021. Adding this category also generates additional prize money while promoting a new meat to competitors.