Po was born in a remote farming village populated entirely by pandas. There he grew up happily with his biological father Li Shan and his mother, until one day the village was invaded by an evil, power-hungry peacock named Shen, who sought to avert a prophecy by eliminating any threat to his rule.
As his wolf followers slaughtered the pandas and destroyed the village, Po's mother fled with her son, while Li stayed behind to try and fight them off. As the wolves quickly started to close in on her, Po's mother managed to temporarily elude the wolves and found a crate of radishes, which she hid her child in. Mother and son shared one final moment of farewell before his mother caught the attention of the wolves and lead them away from him, sacrificing her life for her son.
The crate Po was in was eventually shipped far away to a village in the Valley of Peace, where the owner of a noodle shop, Mr. Ping, found the baby panda. Though hesitant to get involved at first, the goose felt pity for the infant and brought him inside where he fed him and gave him a bath, and as he continued to care for him, he grew to love the cub. Eventually realizing that no one was looking for the child, Mr. Ping decided to adopt him, giving him the name "Po" and raising him as his own son.
Since then, Po had been happily raised in the noodle shop, learning all he knew as a noodle maker from his adoptive father. Until the events in the second film, Po never questioned Mr. Ping about whether he was adopted, as both father and son shared a deep mutual love and respect. He did, however, carry doubts that they were related.