AgLines: Nebraska Farmers Union Foundation donates to ‘Pork Cares’ program


By Robert Pore, The Grand Island Independent (N) 

Jun 20, 2020


LINCOLN — Nebraska Farmers Union Foundation has sent the “Pork Cares” project sponsored by the Nebraska Pork Producers Association a $1,000 donation.


The “Pork Cares” program makes it possible for Nebraska pig farmers to donate their animals to Nebraska food banks. The donated pigs are processed by the Loeffel Meat Laboratory on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln East Campus. The USDA inspected laboratory has opened up to process and package 12 donated pigs a week to help meet the growing demand for food banks and food pantries. Nebraska food banks are helping get pork into the hands of those in need.


The donation will be used to help cover the costs of transportation and processing of the donated pork to the food banks and pantries.


“The ‘Pork Cares’ program accomplishes a double benefit,” said John Hansen, foundation secretary. “First, it reduces the number of pigs that farmers might otherwise be forced to euthanize because of the decrease in meat processing capacity caused by COVID-19 outbreaks at meat processing plants. Second, it allows those pigs to be donated and processed for food banks that serve people in need across our state.


“This program turns two bad outcomes into two good outcomes. Hogs are not wasted, and hungry people get fed. We thank the Nebraska Pork Producers Association and all their pig producers as well as the University of Nebraska and the Loeffel Meat Laboratory and its staff for making this innovative and positive program possible.”


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