South Dakota beef producers help "Pump Up" blood donations | TSLN.com

South Dakota beef producers help "Pump Up" blood donations

The South Dakota Beef Industry Council is celebrating May as Beef Month by partnering with United Blood Services in the 5th annual “Pump Up the Iron and Eat Beef” campaign. Throughout the month of May, blood donors will receive a $2 Beef Buck or Beef Certificate as a thank you for their life-saving donation. The SDBIC, through the Beef Checkoff, will contribute $12,000 to UBS. In return, 6,000 donors will receive the coupons. These coupons can be used to purchase beef in restaurants and retail grocery stores.

The Director of Donor Recruitment with United Blood Services, Beth-Anne Ferley, says the partnership between SD beef producers and UBS is a good fit.

“It works well together. When you donate blood, you lose a lot of your iron. When you eat beef products, you gain iron back,” said Ferley.

The partnership was started five years ago to show appreciation for SD communities. As a result of the collaboration, blood donations have increased.

Registered Dietitian Holly Swee, SDBIC Director of Nutrition and Consumer Information agrees. “This is a great promotion. Not only do we help save lives by securing an abundant supply of blood, but it gives us an opportunity to educate the public on the important role beef plays in a healthy diet,” said Swee.

Beef helps replenish the body’s iron after giving blood. Iron aids in making new red blood cells, carries oxygen to the body’s cells and tissues, and helps the immune system. Beef is also an excellent source of protein. Unlike other protein sources, beef is a complete protein, containing all the essential amino acids or protein building blocks that the body cannot make on its own.

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The $2 Beef Certificates and Beef Bucks will be distributed throughout the month of May to blood donors at UBS centers in Rapid City, Aberdeen and Mitchell as well as at UBS satellite collections. The Sioux Falls Community Blood Bank will also offer the beef coupons during May.

The United Blood Services will celebrate the “Pump Up the Iron and Eat Beef” campaign with an outdoor grilling event May 22 at the Rapid City location. The Rapid City outdoor promotion, at 2209 West Omaha Street, will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The SD Stockgrowers Association is donating the hamburger for the Rapid City grilling event.

Ferley invites people to stop in at the UBS outdoor grilling event to donate blood, receive a $2 beef coupon and enjoy a tasty beef burger. For additional blood donation details contact Beth-Anne Ferley at baferley@bloodsystems.org or 605-342-8585.