November 14, 2002

Share The Harvest Program Hoping To Top 2001 Totals

Concerned about the hunger that burdens many Missourians, the Department of Conservation founded a way to help families in need. In 1992, the Department started Share the Harvest, a program that provides an easy way for hunters to donate venison to Missourians in need of red meat.

Scotland County has participated in the food-sharing program for the past five years under the direction of the Scotland County Rotary Club in conjunction with Rutledge Meat Processing and Missouri Conservation Agent Gary Miller.

Share the Harvest is a win, win, win program. Hunters win by doing their part to help people in need; cooperating processing plants win by getting positive feedback for their involvement and donating locker space; and sponsoring organizations win by having a ready-made service project for a good cause.

Hunters can donate their deer at the Rutledge locker. At the time of donation they will be asked to pay $30 of the processing fee. The Rotary club pays the remainder of the processing cost.

The Conservation Federation and its partners will reimburse up to $25 of the cost of processing a whole deer donated to the Missouri Department of Conservation's Share the Harvest venison donation program. To qualify for the Processing Payback, hunters must have their deer processed by an approved Share the Harvest locker facility.

Partial deer donations to Share the Harvest may be given, but are not eligible for paybacks. Deer must be lawfully harvested in Missouri according to all rules and regulations of the Missouri Department of Conservation.

This coupon must be completed by the hunter and signed by a representative of the Share the Harvest-approved meat processor. The white/original Processing Payback coupon, must be mailed along with the original "paid" receipt from the meat processor to: Conservation Federation Processing Payback Program 728 West Main, Jefferson City, MO 65101.

After the rebate, Scotland County hunters are out just $5 for the processing and have made a valuable contribution to help feed the needy of this region.

The processed venison is distributed to area families through the Northeast Missouri Community Action Agency.

Last year hunters donated 36 deer to the Scotland County Share the Harvest program with the Rotary Club footing the bill for more than $1,400 to help donate food to families in the community.

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