The pilot program “Beef to School” kicked off Jan. 4 at the Wall School with 90 pounds of locally raised beef served to more than 200 students during the lunch time. Students were enthusiastic about the hot hamburger sandwiches they were served.
The Wall School lunch program, Wall Meat Processing, the Wall FFA and the Ag Committee of Wall Economic Development have been working to be the first in South Dakota to use locally raised beef in their school lunch program. This program started as a pilot project. Local ranchers are donating the beef. Wall Meat Processing is contributing the cost of processing two head and delivering the beef to school.
The purpose of this program also is educational. Students are educated about what they eat, where it comes from, and how important it is to eat fresh food that comes from natural sources. This program will offer students an opportunity to engage in conversation and activities revolving around beef nutrition an important element in building beef demand for future generations.
“The major thing about local food is that it helps your local economy, said Josh Geigle, a local rancher. “That money goes back to the community and gets spent several times
The pilot program “Beef to School” will continue throughout the semester and become sustainable. If it continues to go well, the school will procure locally raised beef from Wall Meats for next year. The Wall FFA students plan to visit each elementary classroom this semester utilizing the curriculum provided by the South Dakota Beef Council.