Farming tradition continues in Lowndes - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Farming tradition continues in Lowndes

Lowndes County - You could call Dr. Glenwood Hill the ham expert. "You need to know what you're looking for on the inside, the bone structure, the anatomy of the hog so you'll know where to probe," said Hill.

After 20 years of judging the Lowndes County Ham and Egg show, he can spot the grand champion in no time. He carefully examines each piece of meat, making sure it has good form, and a rich, smoky smell. "You need a good nose," said Hill.

The scent makes all the difference in this competition, but across the hall where the eggs are being judged, its all in the look. Judges use a candling device to spot every little imperfection. "We want a well defined yolk and a small air pocket, and no cracks," said Chad Beard, Egg Judge.

The Ham and Egg show is a 55 year tradition here in Lowndes County, and each year it gets bigger and better. "We're pushing about 75 hams, we're up from last year," said Mickey Fourakers, Lowndes County Extension Agent.

But that's not the case in other counties. This is the only ham and egg show left in the state. "Curing hams and curing meat was a staple in the early 30's and 40's, and this is a way we can continue and preserve this way of life," said Fourakers.

Organizers say the key to keeping this long-standing tradition alive is youth involvement. This year's show has several entries from 4-H and other young agriculture clubs. "It's important that we pass this from generation to generation, just as a way of preserving our history," said Fourakers.

A history that may be forgotten in other parts of the state, but will keep growing strong as long as this show continues.

posted by ashley.harper@walb.com