Meat locker industry booms, turkey sales drop before Thanksgiving


Vinny Lowerre, KWWL-TV (IA)

November 18, 2020


WAVERLY, Iowa (KWWL) - Meat lockers throughout the pandemic receiving booming business throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.


The lockers are now in their holiday season, when it's supposed to be one of the busiest times for meat locker business.


Oran Meat Locker during the pandemic has been running at double the capacity of livestock since March. The double capacity is from the demand of meat products.


Normally, Co-Owner Todd Briddle sees the double capacity in Sept. when fair animals are brought to his business. Briddle is forced to limit his livestock drop-offs to those who are nearby.


"We got a call list that's about two weeks worth of work, and we told them we wouldn't put you on the call list unless the callers agree they can get to the locker within two hours or less of the phone call," Briddle said.


Briddle says some meat lockers are nearly booked for livestock up until 2022. The waitlist for steer and hogs could be months-long at a time.


"If you called today and said, "Hey I have a steer I need to get in," I'm going to tell you at best it's going to be at best nine months to get it into my building. This means 2021 is about 85% booked," Briddle said.


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