Minnesota farmer hopes Biden plan leads to more small meat processors
President Biden’s action plan to increase competition in the beef and poultry markets should result in more small meat processors.
Sara Hewitt raises beef cattle in southern Minnesota and tells Brownfield the pandemic has shown why that’s going to be critical moving forward.
“Getting locker dates just about anywhere (has been very difficult). We scheduled our last ones a year ago just to get them where we’re at now, and we stay on an open list so when they get cancellations we try to take (them).”
She says the Minnesota Department of Agriculture is facilitating grants to open the door for additional beef processing capacity.
“But we really need a lot more of those equal-to processing facilities as well because we have a lot of people looking to purchase direct if they can, or to open up those avenues where farmers can sell into schools or sell into their local restaurant scene.”
Under Biden’s plan, USDA is offering grants totaling $375 million for independent processing projects, providing resources that support worker safety, and will assist with inspection pressures.