A ‘meaty’ donation to Franklin County schools

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FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – One organization recently made a meaty investment in the future of Franklin County students.

It’s a longstanding tradition during ‘Beef Month’ in Alabama. The Franklin County Cattlemen’s Association donates beef to county schools. This year, they donated over 400 pounds of meat to high school Family and Consumer Sciences classes.

With cattle prices growing, and school system budgets shrinking, the gratitude stacks higher.

“We’re so grateful for this. It allows us to do something we would other wise not be able to do in this program,” said Phil Campbell teacher Joslyn Garrison. “We’re all strapped for cash right now in the school system so any donations are greatly appreciated, especially during this time.”

Steven Smith is the President of the Franklin County Cattlemen’s Association. He said they gave away hundreds of dollars worth of meat, a valuable donation.

“With the price of beef so high and the funding that they lack, it helps them to be able to do some of the programs that are required of them,” said Smith.

It’s a donation that will last high school FACS students in Franklin County the whole year. They use it to learn proper meat handling methods, and of course they cook it!

“We focus a lot on meat thermometers and proper temperatures and things for meat,” said Garrison. “We will also make stir fry, and basic meals.”

The donation was all in the name of learning, and in this case, learning valuable life skills. It’s a program even more vital in small, rural towns.

“Our students, a lot of them go out to fast food places to work and they need to know some basic skills.”

Beef producers are enjoying record-high cattle prices. Cattlemen’s Association members hope the effort will encourage consumers to continue enjoying beef at home and out at restaurants.

The donation was a way to promote their efforts.

“It’s just a way to get the word out that beef is good for you,” Smith said. “It has high protein, nutritional values.”

School Board leaders say despite the rising cattle costs, they don’t see a cut in meat donations any time soon.

On Thursday the Alabama Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries will proclaim October 23 as ‘Beef Day’ in the state. They plan to discuss the economic impact of Alabama’s $2.5 billion cattle industry.

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