Every year, Kentucky Farm Bureau hosts a traditional Kentucky ham breakfast. The event takes place roughly one week after the Kentucky State Fair begins. “The Ham Breakfast celebrates agriculture and brings together urban and rural Kentuckians from every part of the state.” (KFB) This year, the tradition celebrated its 53rd anniversary, and had 1,600 attendees. The breakfast tradition began back in 1964, and to date has raised nearly $9.3 million dollars for organizations and charities across Kentucky.
Broadbent’s B & B Foods has won the Grand Champion Ham Blue Ribbon 17 times including our latest win this year. The wins have not all been consecutive but the bidding prices for these hams continue to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for Kentucky charities. This year’s buyer was Central Bank, with a winning bid of $600,000 which they decided to split among 6 organizations and charities. Some may not realize but, it is actually the auction winner who decides which organizations the money bid is donated too.
Throughout our purple ribbon success (in this contest the blue ribbons are participation ribbons), we have set multiple records for the dollar amounts of the winning bids. Back in 2005, just a decade ago our ham broke a new record by bringing in $500,000 from First Southern Bank. Then that record was smashed by the $1,600,000 paid for the 2010 Grand Champion Ham. The record didn’t last long before in 2014, the Grand Champion Ham fetched a whopping $2 million dollars when purchased by Hermitage Farm, LLC and Republic Bank. That record has yet to be broken. Each year it is anyone’s guess as to what dollar amounts the bids will jump to during the Ham Breakfast auction, but we look forward to it each year.
Just for fun, let’s put a little perspective on this year’s winning bid. At $600,000 for a 17.38-pound ham, it comes out to right at $34,522 per pound. Online at broadbenthams.com you can purchase a similar ham cured in the same fashion and around the same size for merely $72.00. That means to get that same dollar amount we would need to sell 8,334 hams, and that’s not considering our initial cost for the hams. Sometimes it is overwhelming to think of how much money our ham’s fetch, but then again it is all for charity and that kind of money can bring some pretty amazing changes for those Kentuckians touched by this blessing.