New Program Looks To Provide Fresh Meat To Those In Need

May 12, 2020

Credit Wyoming Hunger Initiative

Wyoming First Lady Jennie Gordon's hunger initiative has started a new program, Food From the Farm and Ranch, to get local meat to people in need.

The Wyoming Hunger Initiative is partnering with state groups and agencies like the Wyoming Stock Growers Association and the Wyoming Department of Agriculture to provide ground beef.

Gordon said the goal of Food From the Farm and Ranch is to provide the meat to people who need it and create connections between local producers and the public in the long term.

Gordon said to start, three beef cattle have been donated. Employees from the Wyoming Department of Agriculture raised some of the funds for the meat to be processed, while the rest was donated. Wyoming Custom Meats in Hudson will process the first three animals.

"In about two weeks, the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies truck will be picking them up. The food bank will distribute it when they do their regular distributions throughout the state," said Gordon.

Gordon said they are hoping to get more processors involved to make transporting cattle easier and they are already in talks with a process in Northeast Wyoming. She added that once the program was announced, more ranchers have offered to donate cattle.

The first lady said she hopes this program goes beyond the immediate issues raised by the pandemic.

"We're hoping this will create that relationship between the producers and consumers, especially in a time where you're reading a lot in the paper about COVID-19 affecting plants and plants shutting down, knowing you have a product that was produced locally and is processed locally is really reassuring," Gordon said.

She added they hope to be able to compensate producers who can provide cattle as the program grows.

People interested in donating may contact the Wyoming Hunger Initiative or the Wyoming Stock Growers Association.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Catherine Wheeler, at cwheel11@uwyo.edu.