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Be part of a successful deer donation program

White-tailed deer standing amongst trees in a grassy area.

URBANA, Ill. – In response to rising food and meat prices and the challenges food pantries have in obtaining meat, University of Illinois Extension, along with key partners, launched the Illinois Deer Donation Program in 2022. This 12-county pilot program fought food insecurity by matching hunters in East Central Illinois with meat processors and food pantries. 

Extension is presenting a live online webinar summarizing the outcomes of the inaugural program on April 19, from noon to 12:45 p.m. Information covered will include pounds of meat donated, number of pantries reached, and plans for next year. Food pantry operators, hunters, conservation agencies, and potential meat processors who want to be involved in future donation programs are encouraged to participate.

Those interested in attending can register at

The Illinois Deer Donation Program is supported by the Health Equity Achieved Together Project, a multi-disciplinary collaboration with University of Illinois SNAP-Ed. The objective of the presentation is to increase awareness of the program and the role food donation plays in the food security of a community. Participants will also gain an understanding of the steps of a successful donation program, and the relationship between hunters, food pantries, and meat processors. There will be time allotted for questions and answers.

For more information or if reasonable accommodation is needed to participate, please contact Caitlin Mellendorf or call 217-877-6042. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time for meeting access needs.

SOURCE: Caitlin Mellendorf, Nutrition and Wellness Educator, Illinois Extension

About Extension

Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.