Beef + Lamb New Zealand Genetics is launching a beef programme, which it says is designed to generate more income for beef producers and the economy while also protecting the environment.
B+LNZ’s chief executive officer Sam McIvor says the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has made 2020 a particularly tough year for many people and Meat the Need allows individual farmers to make a meaningful difference to people’s lives.
“This is a fantastic opportunity, as it allows our industry to support and nourish the more vulnerable members of our community with our nutrient-rich, healthy, grass-fed red meat,” he said.
Meat the Need is the brainchild of South Island farmers Wayne Langford and Siobhan O’Malley and the initiative has garnered support from B+LNZ, DairyNZ and the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) who provided funding through its Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures Fund.
Through Meat the Need, farmers supply livestock to meat processor Silver Fern Farms who then provides the equivalent weight in mince in 500gram packages to nominated community organisations at regular intervals.
The Salvation Army is one of the community organisations benefiting from the initiative.
Vikki Stevenson, divisional director for community ministries for The Salvation Army’s southern division says that before Meat the Need came along, they had minimal meat to give out in their food parcels.
“Now they are supplying us monthly based on our numbers and it’s fantastic,” she said.
She says many of the Salvation Army’s clients find it exciting to receive meat in their food parcels as for many, meat makes the meal complete.
“I love seeing the excitement it brings to their face. It is also encouraging for us to know we are providing some nutrition.”