Meat Processing Essential, Farmers, Grocers Thank Governor for Efforts to Keep Processing Moving Forward
LINCOLN, NEB. – Partners at the beginning and end of the food supply chain are thanking Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts for his work with meat processors to both protect employees and help keep meat processing moving forward in Nebraska.
“This is an extremely difficult time for everyone, but the fact remains that without livestock production and meat processing, there wouldn’t be meat at the grocery store, it wouldn’t’ be available for curbside pickup or delivery from restaurants, nor would you be able to get meat at the fast food drive thru. That is reality,” said Steve Nelson, Nebraska Farm Bureau president. “Our farmers are already being challenged in finding processing for market ready livestock due to slow-downs at in-state processors and plant closures in neighboring states. Widespread closure of processing plants, even for limited periods of time, could be devastating for farmers and consumers alike. We appreciate Gov. Ricketts’ ongoing efforts to work with meat processors to protect employees and to keep meat processing moving forward.
Millions of Americans, including Nebraskans, rely on meat protein. Meat processing is the critical process of harvesting livestock for conversion into the meat that ultimately is available for consumption in the form of fresh meats like hamburger, pork chops, steaks, roasts, chicken breasts, and in other forms, such as frozen and canned meats, and other meat products.
“The process of how food gets from the farm gate to the dinner plate is a delicate one that shouldn’t be taken for granted. The stability of our food supply is dependent on everyone along the supply chain being able to do their part, including the meat processing sector” said Kathy Siefken, executive director of the Nebraska Grocery Industry Association. Whether it is the pepperoni and hamburger on frozen pizzas, or canned chicken and all the different fresh meats behind the counter, when you walk through a grocery store, all those products are the result of meat processing. Farmers are farming, grocery stores are open, it is imperative every step necessary to protect workers is taken to keep meat processors’ doors open. Gov. Ricketts has played a key role in trying to make that happen.”
Gov. Ricketts has worked with meat processors throughout the COVID-19 crisis, recently sharing insights as to his efforts with meat processors and representatives of meat processing employees focused on protecting employees and curbing the spread of COVID-19 in meat processing facilities.
The Nebraska Farm Bureau is a grassroots, state-wide organization dedicated to supporting farm and ranch families and working for the benefit of all Nebraskans through a wide variety of educational, service, and advocacy efforts. More than 58,000 families across Nebraska are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve rural and urban prosperity as agriculture is a key fuel to Nebraska’s economy. For more information about Nebraska Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit www.nefb.org.
The Nebraska Grocery Industry Association (NGIA) was formed in 1903 by grocers in the Omaha area. The organization has gone through several name changes and now represents all facets of the food industry throughout Nebraska. Membership includes grocery store owners, wholesalers, and vendors who are located throughout the Midwest. NGIA serves it membership through efficient and economical programs that are not available through other sources at the rates that have been negotiated for its membership. In addition, NGIA lobbies on both a state and national level, representing members of the food industry. For more information about the Nebraska Grocery Industry Association visit http://www.nebgrocery.com.
–Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation
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