Hunters Sharing the Harvest

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MUNCY TOWNSHIP -- Despite the weather, rifle deer season is in full swing.  It's no secret people hunt for different reasons. Some like to eat the meat, while others like the trophy.

There is another option, one where you can help feed the hungry for free.

It's been a busy week at Springman's Country Store near Muncy. Employee Collier Nix says more than 150 deer were brought in Monday and Tuesday. But with the exception of a few people on Wednesday, the rain kept many people away.

"A little bit slower, maybe about ten," Nix said.

Nix says some of the hunters who brought in deer asked to participate in a statewide program called "Hunters Sharing the Harvest." Hunters can donate some or all of their venison.

Springman's Country Store and other participating places process the meat and give it to food banks.

"People who are more or less in the area looking for a trophy or something like that, they'll take what they want and donate the rest, or someone will have interest in the back straps and they'll donate all the trim weight to Hunters Sharing the Harvest," Nix said.

A lot of that venison comes to the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, which is good because the director here says that this place is always looking for lean protein.

"We can never get enough proteins in here so it's helping that way. But also hunting is just part of the fabric here in Pennsylvania. It always has been part of our culture here. So it's really a good way for the community to come together," Eric Orndorff said.

Eric Orndorff is the regional director of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

"The processing cost is free to the hunter and then in turn, after it's processed, the processor will be reimbursed through Hunters Sharing the Harvest," Orndorff said.

Hunters who are interested in donating to the program can take their deer to one of 115 participating meat processors throughout the state and donate any amount of venison. You can find a link here.