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USMEF Japan Relief Effort Continues to Grow

Published: Apr 05, 2011
The U.S. red meat industry relief effort coordinated by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) designed to aid the victims of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan is gaining momentum with the announcement of $200,000 in contributions from the beef industry.

The Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the Federation of State Beef Councils have announced that they each are investing $100,000 from the Beef Checkoff Program to help feed the estimated 240,000 people in Japan who were injured, misplaced and left homeless and hungry by the disaster there.

This announcement brings the current total of the USMEF program to roughly $400,000, with other donations of cash and product pending from a number of state agriculture organizations, meat processors and individuals.

The U.S. pork industry helped give the Japan Relief Effort impetus with contributions of $100,000 from the National Pork Board (NPB), $50,000 from the Minnesota Pork Board and $25,000 from the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC).

The Washington State Beef Commission has donated more than $18,000 generated by a bull sale conducted by the Washington Cattlemen’s Association.

“The generosity of American producers and processors is timely and certainly needed by the thousands left homeless and hungry in Japan,” said Philip Seng, USMEF President and CEO. “We know that the effects of the earthquake and tsunami will last for months – long after the story has left the public spotlight. For that reason, we’re hoping that this relief effort will continue and we can provide critical assistance to our friends in a country that is a key agricultural trade partner for the United States.”

The funds raised through the USMEF Japan Relief Effort will be used to ensure that U.S. red meat is delivered to Japan for those in need. USMEF estimates that a single container of beef or pork can provide 80,000 meals, meaning that three containers will be needed to provide the displaced people even one meal each.

“There is a serious need in Japan, so we have ambitious goals to provide significant assistance,” said Seng.

Anyone wishing to contribute the Japan Relief Effort can contact Dan Halstrom (, Jim Herlihy ( or John Hinners ( of USMEF at (303) 623-6328.