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Thousands of needy Iowans feast on deer meat donated by hunters

deer-shot-dead-in-mason-city-shooters-ecaped-2012-12-27DES MOINES – The Iowa DNR says that thousands of needy Iowans have have benefited from a program where hunters can donate extra deer meat.

Hunters in Iowa use the popular HUSH (Help Us Stop Hunger) program to donate deer meat to food banks. The programs works with 81 participating lockers to provide high quality meat to needy Iowans, through the Food Bank of Iowa.

Field dressed deer are skinned, de-boned and ground into two-pound packages and then distributed to local needy families. The program is funded by hunters, who pay a dollar surcharge with each deer tag purchase.

HUSH has provided meat from 66,300 deer to those who need it—nearly 3,400 last year. Processors receive $75 for their end of the work. The Food Bank of Iowa picks up $5, as it oversees distribution.

Each locker will accept whole deer, asking the hunter to fill out a Hunter HUSH card. There is no fee paid at the locker. A list of participating lockers is available in the Iowa Hunting Regulations and online at

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