Meat & Livestock News

Iowa Tops the List in USDA Grants for Meat Processors: A State-by-State Analysis

Meat processing plant. Production line of meat.Line for the production of meat with packaging and cutting . Industrial equipment at a meat factory.

Over the past two years, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded significant grants to meat processors across various states. Leading the pack is Iowa, followed by Missouri and Michigan, according to recent data.

Iowa’s Dominance

Iowa, a state renowned for its pork production, has received the highest number of grants and the largest sum of money from the USDA.

The state secured 35 grants, amounting to over $47 million. This represents more than 10% of the total number of grants (320) and over 18% of the total funds disbursed ($262 million) by the USDA for meat processing.

The most substantial grant in Iowa was awarded to Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Company, LLC, aimed at supporting the construction of its $520-million processing facility.

Missouri and Michigan Follow

Missouri ranked second, receiving 21 grants that totalled $4.6 million. The largest grant, worth $730,000, was allocated to Zimmerman Meats. The funds are intended to assist with a long-term expansion project, which includes transitioning from state to federal inspection.

Zimmerman Meats also plans to increase its meat packaging and further processing capabilities tenfold to capitalise on value-added opportunities.

Michigan secured the third spot with 16 grants, amounting to just under $7 million. The largest grant in the state, worth $2 million, was given to Swift Run Station for the construction and equipping of a new meat and poultry processing and retail facility.

Noteworthy Exceptions

While some states received more funds in total, these were often skewed by a single, large grant.

For example, South Carolina had only three grant recipients but was awarded a total of $25.4 million. This was largely due to a $25 million grant given to Prestage Farms of South Carolina.

By examining the distribution of USDA grants, it becomes clear that states with strong agricultural sectors are receiving substantial support for meat processing. However, the data also reveals that large, individual grants can significantly impact the total funding received by a state.