Saffron Restaurants reservation Iowa food banks benefit from donations from Pork in the Pantry

Iowa food banks benefit from donations from Pork in the Pantry

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Pork producers across Iowa have donated more than $43,000 worth of pork to local food banks in recent months. It was done in conjunction with the Pork in the Pantry program hosted by the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

Now in its second year, Pork in the Pantry provides funding of up to $1,000 to each participating pork producer organization in the province. Provinces are responsible for purchasing the pork and donating it, and IPPA reimburses them. This year, 38 producer organizations from the province participated in Pork in the Pantry.

“Food insecurity remains a major problem in Iowa and these donations to local food banks will help,” said Matt Gent, president of the Iowa Pork Producers Association. “Pork producers care deeply about their communities, and this is one of the many ways we show that.”

In addition to donating much-needed protein to local food banks, many producer organizations in the province purchased the pork from local vendors. So not only does Pork in the Pantry help people in need, the program also supports local businesses. Food banks often have a shortage of meat products, so this is a great way to get nutritious protein into the diets of food-insecure Iowans.

“Hunger is on the rise in Iowa,” said Linda Gorkow, executive director of the Iowa Food Bank Association. “This Pork in the Pantry program is an incredible opportunity to ensure much-needed protein is provided to families, individuals and seniors who don’t have enough to eat. Protein is one of the most requested items at food banks and pantries across the state, so every ounce of pork donated to the pantries serving Iowans will make an incredible impact.

The $43,000 pork will provide an estimated 55,000 servings of protein for Iowans experiencing food insecurity.

“What a great opportunity for pork producers to help support needs across the state of Iowa,” said Gregg Hora, president of the Webster County Pork Producers, who was participating in Pork in the Pantry for the second time. They donated to five different organizations in the county, four in Ft. Dodge and one in Gowrie.

“The needs are not just in Webster County, but in rural Iowa as well,” Hora said. “You look at rising food costs in many different areas. Pork is still a high-quality product at a very reasonable price in stores. The feeling that we have families or children here who are not getting enough high-quality protein is real and offering this pork loin product is just one way we can help from a nutritional perspective.”

Last year’s Pork in the Pantry program saw more than $40,000 worth of pork donated to local food banks.

The provincial pork producer organizations that participated in Pork in the Pantry in 2024 are: