The Missouri Department of Conservation and the Conservation Federation of Missouri thank the thousands of Missouri deer hunters who donated 289,292 pounds of venison to the state’s Share the Harvest program this past deer season. The donated deer meat will help feed hungry Missourians all around the state.
This season’s total of 289,292 pounds of venison included nearly 5,600 whole deer. Hunters donated 198,277 pounds of venison the year before. Since the program was started in 1992, Share the Harvest has provided nearly 4 million pounds of lean, healthy venison to help feed hungry Missourians.
Share the Harvest is coordinated by MDC and CFM. It works by deer hunters donating their extra venison to more than 100 participating meat processors throughout the state who grind the deer meat into ready-to-use packages. The packaged venison is then given to local food banks and food pantries for distribution to Missourians in need of food assistance.
“Hunters started Share the Harvest because they saw a need in their communities,” said MDC Director Sara Pauley. “And hunters remain the driving force behind this popular program that helps feed our fellow Missourians who are in need. We sincerely thank the thousands of deer hunters who support Share the Harvest, along with the many participating meat processors and sponsors.”
Processing fees are covered entirely or in part by numerous local supporting organizations and statewide sponsors, which include: MDC, CFM, Shelter Insurance, Bass Pro Shops, Missouri Chapter Safari Club International, Missouri Chapter National Wild Turkey Federation, Midway USA Inc., Missouri Food Banks Association, and United Bowhunters of Missouri.
“Share the Harvest is a partnership of citizens, agencies, organizations, and corporations working together to provide healthy, protein-rich meat to those who may otherwise go without,” said CFM Executive Director Brandon Butler. “Hunters across Missouri should be proud of this outstanding program.”
For more information on Share the Harvest, visit short.mdc.mo.gov/Zoz.