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Smithfield Crowns Hog Wild Throwdown Champion at 37th American Royal World Series of Barbecue®

KANSAS CITY, Mo., Oct. 31, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Smithfield is thrilled to announce Suzanne Clark of Phoenix as the Smithfield Hog Wild Throwdown champion. Clark competed against the five other Hog Wild Throwdown finalists for the championship title at the 37th Annual American Royal World Series of Barbecue® in front of award-winning celebrity pitmasters Tuffy Stone, Moe Cason, and Weber Grillmaster Kevin Kolman. After nearly 20 hours of grilling fresh pork during the three-round, single-elimination tournament, Smithfield crowned Clark champion for her winning recipe of Caramelized Onion & Bacon Stuffed Smithfield Pork Burgers with Balsamic Chipotle Glaze and Lime Hollandaise sauce. As the Grand Prize winner, Clark took home a new 2016 Ford F-150 XL pickup truck and $2,000 in cash.

Celebrity pitmasters and judges Moe Cason, left, and Tuffy Stone, right, present Suzanne Clark of Phoenix, AZ with her Ford F-150 XL pickup truck after her championship win at the Smithfield Hog Wild Throwdown finale at the American Royal World Series of Barbecue.




A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/1f851f46-32d3-4200-9fc5-f7e1a8dfb0f9

The celebrity pitmasters judged the recipes on originality, creativity, taste and tenderness, overall appearance, and presentation. During each round, the contestants developed a unique grilling recipe featuring a different fresh pork cut, including Smithfield Prime St. Louis Style Ribs, Bone-in Pork Loin, and Signature Ground Pork.

“We were so impressed by the caliber of dishes that each finalist brought to the judging table – from Asian Style Pork Lettuce Wraps to Prickly Pear Glazed Ribs – the contestants truly showcased the versatility of fresh pork,” said Tuffy Stone. “It was a close competition, but in the end, Suzanne proved she could throw down with the best fresh pork recipes.”

A self-taught artist, stay-at-home mother of five, and home cook, Clark is no stranger to the food competition circuit. Having only started her cooking career five years ago, she’s taken home dozens of awards prior to her Smithfield Hog Wild Throwdown win. One of her most noted victories came this year when Clark’s cooking and competitive skills helped her earn the title of “The World Pasta Champion” at the World Food Championships in Las Vegas. Other awards include placing in the Top Ten Recipe and Side Dish categories at the World Food Championships in 2013 and 2012 respectively, Champion of the 2014 Gilroy Garlic Festival, and much more. Clark is also a regular contributor to “Midday Arizona,” a local television show in Phoenix, as a home cook and lifestyle expert.

“When the pressure’s on during competitions, I always go back to my roots and cook from the heart,” said Clark. “I brought my Kentucky heritage and southwestern flare to each dish I created and am really proud of the results. Smithfield put on one great competition and I’m so excited to drive around town in my new Ford F-150!”

In addition to hosting the Smithfield Hog Wild Throwdown finale, Smithfield served as the presenting sponsor of the American Royal World Series of Barbecue®. All weekend long, attendees enjoyed delicious fresh pork rib samples and giveaways at the Smithfield stage. To view the official Hog Wild Throwdown contest rules, recipes, and grilling tips and tricks, visit www.SmithfieldThrowdown.com. To view the full list of winners of the 2016 American Royal, visit www.AmericanRoyal.com.

About Smithfield
A leading provider of high-quality pork products, Smithfield was founded in 1936 in Smithfield, Virginia. From hand-trimmed ribs, loins and bacon and slow-smoked holiday hams to marinated tenderloins, Smithfield brings artistry, authenticity and a commitment to heritage, flavor, and handcrafted excellence to everything it produces. With a vast product portfolio including smoked meats, hams, bacon, sausage, ribs, and a wide variety of fresh pork cuts, the company services retail, foodservice, and deli channels across the United States and 30 countries abroad. All of Smithfield's products meet the highest quality and safety standards in the industry. To learn more about how Flavor Hails from Smithfield, please visit www.Smithfield.com, www.Twitter.com/SmithfieldBrand, and www.Facebook.com/CookingWithSmithfield. Smithfield is a brand of Smithfield Foods.

About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $14 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Nathan's Famous®, Farmland®, Armour®, John Morrell®, Cook's®, Kretschmar®, Gwaltney®, Curly's®, Margherita®, Carando®, Healthy Ones®, Krakus®, Morliny®, and Berlinki®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com.

About American Royal Association
Woven through the history of Kansas City since 1899, the American Royal provides opportunities for youth and adults from around the country to compete in our Livestock Show, ProRodeo, Horse Shows and the World Series of BBQ. These events allow the American Royal, a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization to give over $1 million annually for youth scholarships and support agriculture education programs. Over 270,000 attendees annually attend American Royal events that generate over $60 million of economic impact. To learn more about the American Royal visit AmericanRoyal.com.

Media Contacts: Hunter PR for Smithfield Morgan Calef mcalef@hunterpr.com (212) 679-6600

Source:Smithfield Foods