The National Turkey Federation (NTF) honored longtime turkey industry leader Robert H. “Twig” Strickler with the NTF Lifetime Achievement Award during its annual convention being held in San Diego.  Strickler received the award for being one of the pioneers in developing the modern turkey industry and producing fresh turkey retail products.

NTF Chairman Steve Willardsen—who once worked for Strickler—presented him the award.

Strickler spent more than 60 years working and leading Rocco Enterprises, the Shenandoah Valley company his father founded.  In tandem with his brother Charles “Chip” Strickler, also an NTF Lifetime Achievement recipient, he developed Rocco into a force within the turkey industry, making the company the premier supplier of fresh turkey products in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.

At its height, Rocco employed more than 3,000 people and contracted with more than 400 family farmers to raise and produce turkey and chicken products.   In 2001, Cargill Value Added Meats purchased the highly lucrative company.

NTF initiated the Lifetime Achievement Award program at its 1946 Annual Convention.  To date, 68 leaders in the turkey industry have been recognized with this honor.

NTF is the national advocate for all segments of the $14 billion turkey industry—providing services and conducting activities to increase demand and raise awareness for its members’ products, while strengthening their ability to profitably and safely deliver wholesome, high-quality, and nutritious food to consumers worldwide.

February 16, 2013