Twelve thousand Iowa members of the Armed Services and their families recently received a donation of Pork Care Packages from the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation and Iowa Select Farms. Every member of all Iowa military units received $40 worth of coupons good for various pork products, including fresh pork, ham, ribs, bacon, and ground pork, equating to $480,000 in free pork.
“We’re very thankful for our troops and proud to be able to support them,” said Jeff Hansen, president and CEO of Iowa Select Farms and co-founder of the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation. “We know that we could never repay the debt we owe them for our security, but bringing them together for a family meal is our humble way of trying.”
Employees of Iowa Select Farms delivered Pork Care Packages in November and December to all units of the Iowa National Guard, along with the 132nd Fighter Wing, Iowa Air National Guard; 185th Air Refueling Wing, Iowa Air National Guard; U.S. Army Reserves; U.S. Navy Reserves, and U.S. Marine Corps Reserves. Pork Care Packages were also delivered to the Iowa National Guard’s Survivor Outreach Services for 600 Iowa families of fallen soldiers. Family readiness coordinators and unit leaders then delivered the Pork Care Packages to the Soldiers, Airmen, Marines, Sailors and their families during their drill weekend or special gatherings.
One unit leader wrote in, saying, “This last drill weekend my squad had to work very late Saturday and back up early Sunday morning. Some were pretty wore out. I constantly remind them how much I appreciate their choice to serve, give them thanks for their hard work, dedication and sacrifice. After a long grueling drill weekend, I was joyed to be able to hand out the care packages my squad. The package was a reminder to them that their service is appreciated by not just me, but by a countless number of people, to include the individuals and family of the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation. It’s support like this that drives the soldiers to continue their service.”
Two Iowa Servicewomen hold thank-you cards from Iowa Select Farms.
“The Pork Care Packages have received tremendous feedback,” said Jen Sorenson, communications director for Iowa Select Farms. “Coming together to share a meal is so important for families, especially our military families. We know that some of the fondest memories are made around the table, and we hope that these care packages can help families make memories together by planning something special.”
The coupons are being redeemed by the families at local grocery stores and are not specific to a brand or cut. This is the fourth consecutive year that Iowa Select Farms and the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation have provided the Pork Care Packages to show gratitude to military families.
This year, the Pork Care Packages are accompanied by packets of seasoning salt, brown sugar dry rub and ground pork seasoning to bring flavor to a variety of meals and make meal preparation easy.