SALT LAKE CITY — Football season has come and gone, but Utah State and BYU players were still throwing around the pigskin last week.
Players from both teams unloaded nearly 40,000 pounds of pork product Friday donated to the Utah Food Bank by Smithfield Foods Inc. The world’s largest pork processing company, Smithfield Foods donated 25 pounds for every point the Aggies and Cougars scored over the 2019 football season. The combined 675 points added up to 16,875 pounds of pork.
Smithfield Foods then doubled the donation to 40,000 pounds, which the Utah Food Bank estimates is over 160,000 servings of protein.
According to Ginette Bott, president and CEO of the Utah Food Bank, there are roughly 376,000 Utahns struggling with food security.
“We are so grateful for this highly nutritious but rarely donated item, especially in such a remarkable volume,” said Bott. The donations were different from the non-perishable foods like soup, canned vegetables or crackers that the food bank usually receives.
The donation comes at a time when the Utah Food Bank often sees a lull in contributions after the holiday boom. Bott reminded Utahns that hunger impacts families regardless of the season.
“Thousands of men, women and children look to us to provide food for their next meal,” she said.
Although the Utah Food Bank receives an annual donation from Smithfield Foods during the winter months, this was the first time the company involved the football teams from Utah State and BYU.