Oklahoma’s FFA and 4-H livestock showing students showcased their generosity along with their talent during this year’s Oklahoma Youth Expo. Encouraged by the FFA’s Hunger Challenge, over 200 live animals were donated to the Oklahoma Farming and Ranching Foundation for the Pork for Packs and Beef for Backpacks programs during the week-long show.
Through the backpack programs, the Oklahoma Farming and Ranching Foundation takes donated livestock to produce nutritious, high-protein pork and beef sticks in collaboration with Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Oklahoma Beef Council, Oklahoma Pork Council, Oklahoma State University’s Food and Agricultural Products Center, Ralph’s Packing Company in Perkins, and Chickasha Meats. The sticks are then distributed through the Food For Kids Programs operated by the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma and the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma.
The Food for Kids Programs distribute non-perishable food to more than 29,000 chronically hungry students across all 77 counties each week; and the pork and beef sticks provide them with an essential source of protein on weekends and school holidays.
“We have been blown away by the generosity of these students.” Said Jeramy Rich, Oklahoma Farming and Ranching Foundation president. “This year’s donations during the Oklahoma Youth Expo will allow us to produce approximately 280,000 pork sticks for the Food for Kids Programs”
“We owe a special thank you to Thad Doye, Oklahoma Farm Bureau Crop Insurance Manager, for countless hours spent transporting and caring for the livestock. His devotion to this program is inspiring.” Rich added.
As a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit, the Oklahoma Farming and Ranching Foundation is committed to enhancing awareness and understanding of agriculture’s importance to the state. Through educational and social programs for citizens of all ages, the Foundation aims to help Oklahomans recognize the positive impact agriculture has on the state and the importance of protecting it for future generations.
For more information, or to participate in the backpack programs, please visit okfbfoundationforagriculture.org/beef-for-backpacks or contact Amanda Rosholt at (405) 202-1463 or firstname.lastname@example.org.