There is more here than meats the eye

Another rad grad blog you say?… please, spare me! (This is the third so far, so we shouldn’t have hit such a tender spot quite yet)…

But, this one is a little off of the beaten path that leads to Boyd 218…This one leads to Meredith Village Savings Bank, where the Center for Rural Partnerships is found in the upstairs floor.

The Center for Rural Partnerships consists of a team headed by Dr. Ben Amsden, with myself (Jess Wilhelm), Taylor Dillingham, Marylynn Cote, and Rachelle Lyons “ordered” to prepare a report about the meat production, processing and market demand in New Hampshire, and the possible application of a state level meat processing certification program.

Have you heard of a state level certification program? ..gnaw…me neither.

But, now, thanks to a few newspaper articles, an article about our survey made it across the country! And now, people all the way in San Francisco have herd about our study here at PSU (The steaks have been raised!)

Check out these links:

http://www.agweb.com/article/farmers_asked_about_state-licensed_meat_processing_NAA_Associated_Press/

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/1fece9ee95ff4c61b2911859e0c7b856/NH–Local-Meat

http://www.sfchronicle.com/news/article/Farmers-asked-about-state-licensed-meat-processing-5520481.php

http://www.concordmonitor.com/home/12206787-95/farmers-asked-about-state-licensed-meat-processing?ID=abcde&CSAuthResp=63340%3A24584301%3A42221%3A1%3A24%3Aapproved%3AAC390ACC26BEAE6EFB3F7E187171C1CF

The Center for Rural Partnerships at Plymouth State University conducted a survey of meat processors, producers and purchasers in New Hampshire in the beginning of 2014. The purpose of the survey was to learn whether there is market receptivity to a state level meat processing certification in New Hampshire. The New Hampshire Department of Agriculture helped fund the project with the study aim of gathering feedback and opinions that allow for more in depth understanding about the best practices for processing meat. Surveys were developed with all three major stakeholders in mind: meat producers, processors, and purchasers, in an effort to understand all needs.

Surveys were sent to seventy-eight meat producers and twenty-six meat processors in each of the seven regions of New Hampshire, which include the Great North Woods, White Mountains, Dartmouth Lakes Sunapee, Lakes Region, Monadnock Region, Merrimack Valley Region, and Seacoast Region.

Twenty-six meat producers completed a three-page survey for a 33% response rate. Fourteen processors completed a separate five-page survey with a response rate of 54%. An additional phone survey was conducted for meat purchasers. The survey found that meat processors and producers in New Hampshire are interested in the development of a state level meat certification program. In fact, of the twenty-six producer survey respondents, eighteen (69%) indicated that they are interested in a State Inspection Program in New Hampshire as an alternative to a USDA Inspection Program. Of the fourteen processor survey respondents, six (42%) indicated that they are interested in a state inspection program as well.  (Job well done CRP meat team!)

The goal of a state inspection program is to expand market opportunities for small meat producers and processors, strengthen state and local economics, and increase consumer access to local meat products. A state inspected program may expand the opportunities for local producers and processors to sell their meat to consumers. Our study found that there is interest in both meat producers and processors of New Hampshire for a state-inspected processing plan. Further studies will allow for more information about the needs of farmers in the area, as well as the consumer demand for local meat.

This thread may have a tendon-cy to prompt some questions, statements, opinions…If you have any beef with this blog, please leave a message!

Until we meat again…

Jess 🙂

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