HIGHMORE-HARROLD, S.D. (KELO) — Living in South Dakota has its perks, from small towns to the ranching industry to the close-knit communities, and this is a beautiful combination of all three.
Across South Dakota, there are a few school districts doing their part to source their beef locally. Highmore-Harrold is one of them.
Their location in the state provides plenty of people to help piece this idea together.
“We have some wonderful board members who have a ton of experience in the beef industry. And you know, and a lot of local ranchers to who, hey, maybe we should try, try to do it as a donation first, so we went and just advertised it in the paper,” says Superintendent Quinton Cermak.
They are asking ranchers to donate cattle which in turn is a tax deductible.
“We’re a public school. So they’re donating an animal that could ultimately become a profit for them. But they’re choosing instead to give it to the school so that it can be consumed by the students here,” says Cermak.
They only need three to four cattle per school year. Last year all three were donated. Currently, they’re trying to line up the next one for this November. They do need the cattle to be healthy, but they don’t need the prime rib of the lot.
“There are some things where you could put an animal to good use that maybe wouldn’t be top quality somewhere else,” says rancher Paula Haiwick.
Pouring into the health of the next generation.
“I think the beef days are pretty popular. Because it’s good beef. My kids used to come home, you know from school lunch, and they’re like, I don’t even know what that is that we’re eating, because it’s commodity stuff,” said Haiwick.
“And then also I think it’s a little bit of a peace of mind for our parents too, knowing that you know, they’re getting good protein they’re getting, you know, animals that are raised here in Hyde County,” said Cermak.
Their butcher day is set for early November. They say if no one is willing to donate, they will be able to purchase the beef.