DENVER, Feb. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- It's easy to think that in the land of the plenty, everyone has consistent access to high-quality, nourishing foods, like beef. However, according to the United States Department of Agriculture, in 2009, more than 50 million Americans were food insecure and did not have consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy lifestyle.
Today, in conjunction with the largest gathering of the nation's cattlemen and women for their annual meeting in Denver this year, Greeley-based JBS USA – the world's largest animal protein processor – and cattle farmers and ranchers from around the country will make the largest-ever donation and delivery of 16,000 pounds of beef to Colorado's Feeding America Food Banks, drawing attention to the very serious issue of food insecurity right here in our own communities.
"JBS has a strong tradition of community involvement, particularly with food banks," said Bill Rupp, chief operating officer of JBS. "In 2010, we donated nearly 30,000 pounds of food, which went directly to families in need right here in Colorado. We began as a family business and providing families with high-quality food remains our key priority today."
The beef donation will be delivered to Food Bank of the Rockies (10700 East 45th Avenue, Denver, Colorado). Food Bank of the Rockies, which provided 76,000 meals a day in 2010, will divide and distribute the donation to five Feeding America member food banks throughout the state of Colorado, reaching 1,500 nonprofit agencies statewide.
"One in eight people are food insecure in Colorado. In addition to the large number of people who go hungry, one of the biggest challenges our food banks face is providing high-quality, nutritious protein," said Kevin Seggelke, president and CEO of Food Bank of the Rockies. "This generous donation from JBS will allow us to fill important nutrition gaps for families in need."
High-quality and nutritionally efficient foods, such as beef, are important to help meet daily nutritional requirements. One, three-ounce serving of lean beef provides 10 essential nutrients, including protein and B vitamins. Iron and zinc deficiencies are common worldwide and beef is a good source of iron and an excellent source of zinc.
By continuing to innovate and advance what they do, the entire beef industry is able to work together to provide nutritious food to feed a growing population around the world.
"Compared to 50 years ago, there are half as many farmers and ranchers today feeding a United States population that has more than doubled," said Debbie Lyons-Blythe, cattle farmer from Kansas in town for the 2011 Cattle Industry Convention and National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) Trade Show. "Our population will only continue to grow, so farmers and ranchers like me remain committed to feeding a growing population, by providing an affordable supply of high-quality, nutritious beef so that all Americans can have enough food for a healthy, active lifestyle."
The entire beef industry is committed to working together to produce high-quality, nutritious beef. To learn more about JBS' leadership in the beef industry, visit www.jbssa.com. America's cattle farmers and ranchers, through Beef Checkoff programs, invest in research and programs to improve beef safety and quality and to educate consumers on how beef is produced. To learn more about how America's cattle farmers and ranchers are working to fight hunger, visit www.ExploreBeef.org. To learn more about how you can help fight hunger in your backyard, visit www.feedingamerica.org.
With 140 production facilities worldwide and over 120,000 employees, JBS is the largest animal protein processor in the world. Our global, diversified, low-cost production platform is the foundation for a variety of products including food, leather, pet products and biodiesel. An international industry leader, JBS has production and processing plants in Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Australia, USA, Uruguay, Paraguay, Mexico, China and Russia.
About Food Bank of the Rockies
Food Bank of the Rockies, a non-profit organization, distributed nearly 36 million pounds of food last year through 800 partner agencies. Those agencies administer 1,100 hunger-relief programs in Northern Colorado, including Metro Denver, and the entire state of Wyoming. Of the 367,000 people served annually, nearly half are children. Since 1978, FBR has provided 392 million pounds of food to our member agencies, which translates to more than 298 million meals for people in need. Food Bank of the Rockies' key programs are Fighting Hunger Feeding Hope, Denver's Table Food Rescue and FBR's Nutrition Network for children and seniors. Food Bank of the Rockies is a member of Feeding America. For additional information, please visit www.foodbankrockies.org.
About The Beef Checkoff
The Beef Checkoff Program (MyBeefCheckoff.com) was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The Checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen's Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national Checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.
SOURCE The Beef Checkoff