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450 donated sheep translate to 75,000 meals for WA’s hungry

Terry Sim, September 22, 2014
Colin Holt MLC, Wellard Rural Exports' Paul Mahoney and Paul Brown MLC in front of a pen of sheep donated to Foodbank WA at Katanning Regional Sheep Saleyards last Wednesday.

Colin Holt MLC, Wellard Rural Exports’ Paul Mahoney and Paul Brown MLC in front of a pen of sheep donated to Foodbank WA at Katanning Regional Sheep Saleyards last Wednesday.

Western Australia’s Lamb Legends campaign has received its biggest single contribution of 289 lambs from live exporter Wellard.

Wellard donated the 289 quality Western Australian lambs to hunger relief agency Foodbank WA as part of the inaugural Lamb Legends campaign to provide fresh meat to people who struggle to put a nutritious meal on their dinner table.

Wellard livestock manager Paul Mahony said the company bought the animals at the recent Muchea and Katanning sales and immediately donated them to Foodbank WA, in what was the campaign’s single biggest contribution.

“As a company that supplies nations in the Middle East and Asia with protein for their citizens, we also have an obligation to support disadvantaged Australian families,” Mr Mahony said.

Wellard Rural Exports Middle East General Manager Harold Sealy said the Nationals WA must be complimented for organising the campaign.

Wellard also acknowledged the contribution of other businesses that donated their services to transport and process the animals so they can be quickly and efficiently provided to Foodbank WA. Narrikup-based processor Fletcher International processed all donated sheep free of charge, while Treasures Transport and Stockhaul WA assisted with their transport.

The Lamb Legends campaign is an initiative of the Nationals WA and has been supported by sheep graziers, livestock vendors, transport companies and meat processors.

Almost 450 sheep were donated last week to Foodbank WA by vendors and buyers at the state’s two biggest weekly sheep sales – Muchea and Katanning.

The 448 donated animals will provide roughly 75,000 servings of lamb to help fill an identified protein gap in the diet of WA’s hungry.

Member for the Agricultural Region Paul Brown MLC, who spearheaded the campaign, said the result was a tremendous win for organisations serviced by Foodbank WA.

“Lamb Legends was extremely well-received by the agricultural sector, which showed an unprecedented depth of generosity to help those less fortunate than others,” he said.

Major donors include Wellard International Exports, Livestock Shipping Services (Hillside Meat Processors), WA Meat Industry Association, WAMMCO, Beaufort River Meats and Jennacubbine Livestock Services.

Foodbank WA chief executive Greg Hebble said each 100 gram serving of lamb provided almost half of the daily Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) of protein for adults.

“Lamb is also dense with iron and zinc, vitamin B12 and B6, niacin, riboflavin, selenium and a long list of other beneficial daily human nutrient requirements,” he said.

“Having such an important red meat donated towards the diets of those in need is a fantastic outcome for charity and a credit to all those in the industry who rose to the occasion.”

Last year, Foodbank WA provided more than 4.5 million meals to disadvantaged WA families. The animals donated by Wellard and others will provide about 55,000 portions of meat for distribution by Foodbank WA.

The sheep and lamb donation is the second time Wellard has supported Foodbank. In November 2012 Wellard provided Foodbank in Queensland with its biggest ever single donation of livestock (25 cattle) using a newly created beef cattle supply network.

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