The Beef Counts program is a partnership with Washington's Beef Community, Second Harvest and Food Lifeline that provides high-quality, nutritious beef to local food banks to help hungry, local families.
As beef farmers and ranchers, we often take for granted our good fortune – the fact that our freezers are never short on beef for very long. But that is not true for many families struggling to make ends meet and provide nourishing meals each day -- and what could be more satisfying than a meal that includes nutritious, wholesome beef?
In 2010 we learned of the limited options for nutrient-dense beef protein at local food banks. Our response was to launch the Beef Counts: Washington’s Beef Community United Against Hunger program. The partnership with both Food Lifeline, in Western Washington, and Second Harvest, in Eastern Washington, provides nutritious beef to hungry families through their networks of local food banks.
Beef Counts is funded through the generosity of beef farmers and ranchers, auction markets and AgriBeef in Washington State. The program is our way of giving back to our local communities and since its inception, the Beef Counts program has provided more than 1 million beef servings to those in need of high-quality protein in our state.
Back in 2010, when leaders of our Washington Beef Community learned just how little high-quality protein, like beef, reaches our food bank system (only about 4% of all food donations), they felt that was unacceptable and set about to make a change. Beef Counts was launched in Washington state with the help of many producer volunteers, Agri Beef and the Washington State Beef Commission.
The Washington Cattlemen's and CattleWomen's Associations, County Cattlemen's Associations, the Washington Cattle Feeders Association, and Agri Beef Co. have teamed up to help the Beef Counts program make a big impact, one nutritious beef serving at a time. Local farmers and ranchers work together to raise funds and donate cash and cattle to match or exceed Agri Beef's $50,000 annual donation. The donated beef is processed and shipped from the Washington Beef packing plant in Toppenish, WA and distributed to people in need across Washington through our partnership with Second Harvest and Food Lifeline.
The Washington State Beef Commission is proud to partner with Food Lifeline and Haggen Foods, in western Washington, and Second Harvest and Rosauers Supermarkets & Super 1 Foods, in eastern Washington, to promote and grow the Beef Counts program. Both service organizations work with a network of food bank locations in dozens of Washington communities to get more beef to more people in need and the grocery store partners are proud to raise awareness of hunger and fund-raise to help meet the need for high quality protein in the food bank system.
All of the work, donations, and collaboration has paid off. Since 2010, the Beef Counts program has provided over 1 million servings of beef to local families and seniors who desperately need the nutrients and protein found in beef. The work continues.
From Memorial Day through Labor Day, Rosauers and Super 1 shoppers can help.
All summer long, when you purchase St. Helen's Beef, 10 cents of each pound purchased will be donated to purchase beef for the Beef Counts program. With shopper's help, up to $50,000 of beef will be donated to Second Harvest in Eastern Washington communities and then distributed through their partnerships with local food banks and Second Harvest Mobile Food Market.
Watch KREM 2’s weatherman Tom Sherry's BBQ Forecast each Thursday throughout the summer when he shares both the weekend weather forecast and delicious beefy recipes for your grill. Tom helps Washington’s Beef Community raise awareness of the Beef Counts partnership.
In June, Haggen Food shoppers can donate directly to Beef Counts.
From June 19 to July 3rd, in all Western Washington Haggen Food stores, shoppers will be given the opportunity to donate to Beef Counts Program at the check-out counter. Every dollar raised goes directly towards purchasing beef to stock Food Lifeline food banks around the Puget Sound. Just a $5 donation provides six servings of beef for our local neighbors in need!
Stop by the Beef Counts BBQ Fundraisers at the Barkley and Ferndale Haggen locations on June 29 and 30. Purchase a tasty Double R Ranch beef burger or all-beef hot dog meal for just $5. All proceeds go directly to purchase beef for Beef Counts at Food Lifeline food banks.