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Ark La Tex In-Depth: Venison - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Ark La Tex In-Depth: Venison

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It was February of 2013 when KTBS News broke the story. Donated deer meat intended as food for the less fortunate had been destroyed by the instruction of a state health inspector. State health laws are now in synch with generous hunters and with deer season wrapped up, how much of the season's deer harvest made it to those who need it most?

Altogether about sixteen hundred pounds of venison were tossed out a year ago. Taken from the feeding hands of the Shreveport Bossier Rescue Mission. Lawmakers swiftly passed regulations to fix the problem.

Rev. Henry Martin-is the director of the Shreveport Bossier Mission and remembers "Governor Jindal signed that bill into law right here at the rescue mission. The good thing that came out of that was a new bill. Not only can we get venison now, we can get game fish, we can get game birds, and swine. Pigs. So a good thing is happening for us.

Despite the new legislation, the hunters for the hungry donations of protein rich venison is down this year, to about two thousand pounds. About one third of the average.

Rev. Martin addresses the decrease "Our friend at the Bellevue Meat Packing Company Chris and Carla gave us about fifteen hundred pounds just before Christmas. I understand they have not received as much as expected this year.

The Food Bank of Northwest Louisiana provides food for the needy. Director Martha Marak says demand is up. "Since the SNAP or food stamps benefits were reduced we have seen a 23 percent increase in the amount of clients that we are helping. And now we are helping more clients than ever in the history of our organization."

This is while the supply of food in the warehouse has decreased.

Martha Marak states "we are down as far as the amount of food that we have received this year. We are about one hundred and fifty thousand pounds below currently as to where we were last year. Donated food is very hard for us to find. We have a relationship with Hunters for the Hungry. We have met with them several times. They have had a clean out your refrigerator or freezer event for us. Protein is the most expensive food component for us to purchase."

Organizers are keeping the faith that donations will increase.

Rev. Martin further states "I know the hunters out there. Maybe they are waiting to see if they have harvested all they needed before they give. They have always come through for us. The power of prayer I mean. Jeremiah 33:3 god asked his people "Call unto me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things you don't know"

The need is greater than ever, so hunters, if you have more meat than you know what to do with, consider donating it. The processing is handled free of charge by . . And as the reverend said, now that deer season is over, fish and wild hog can be donated all year long.

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