Northwest Meat Processors Association

USDA Pandemic Response and Safety Grant Program will accept applications starting in October 2021

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will open the Request for Applications (RFA) for the Pandemic Response and Safety (PRS) Grant Program in early October 2021. This is a shift from the originally scheduled opening date.

Once open, applicants will still have 45 days to apply. The PRS grant program will provide assistance to small businesses in certain commodity areas, including specialty crop producers, shellfish farming, finfish farming, aquaculture and apiculture; specialty crop, meat, and other processors; distributors; and farmers markets. Approximately $650 million in funding is available for the PRS grants, which are funded by the Pandemic Assistance provided in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.

For detailed descriptions of eligible entities, please see the Pandemic Response and Safety Grant Program forecast at USDA-AMS-TM-PRS-G-21-0011. Eligible entities should visit the PRS grant portal for complete information on the program, including how to obtain a free of charge DUNS Number from Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) BEFORE applying for this program.

The application portal for the PRS grant program will open in October 2021.

Information on Registering Your Business for a DUNS Number

Christi Southerland from Prosperity Ag, LLC recently held a session teaching companies about DUNS numbers and how to acquire a number. Click here to watch the full session courtesy of the Indiana Meat Packers and Processors Association.

Spring Newsletter

Newsletter Spring 2021 Proof.pdf

2021 NWMPA Convention Canceled

2022 Convention Scheduled for Hermiston, Oregon March 17-19th, 2022

Due to the ongoing pandemic, the 2021 NWMPA Convention is canceled. The board has scheduled the 2022 convention for March 17-19th, 2022 at the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center in Hermiston, Oregon. More details will be released later this year about the convention and agenda for 2022. If you have questions, please contact us!

AAMP Convention Registration is Open

Registration for the 82nd American Convention of Meat Processors and Suppliers' Exhibition in Oklahoma City, Okla., July 15-17, is now open!

AAMP’s annual convention is geared toward U.S., Canadian, and foreign operators of small and very small firms in the meat, poultry & food business: packers, processors, wholesalers, HRI, retailers, caterers, deli operators, home foodservice dealers, and catalog marketers. Both members and non-members of the association attend this event looking for a vast array of ideas, supplies, and services.

Online registration and hotel information are available on the AAMP website here. Questions? Contact AAMP Convention Manager Niki Cloud. We hope to see you in OKC!

Apprenticeship Announcement

The NWMPA is pleased to announce that we have our Meat Cutters Apprenticeship Program ready to roll out! We are now taking applications for shops to join and become a part of this industry changing program to raise the level of workmanship, wages and working conditions for everyone in the meat industry in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Some of the key benefits for employers are:

  • Employees with university level education on all aspects of meat cutting and processing

  • Well trained meat cutters who are able to perform all aspects without supervision

  • A pay structure that will encourage people into your shop and will help retain workers

Documents for processors interested in the apprenticeship program are below (all documents in Microsoft Word format):

For more information on how you can get involved, please reach out to our training director, Troy Wilcox. He can be reached by phone at (360) 324-6000 or by email at

Welcome to the Northwest Meat Processors Association

The Northwest Meat Processors Association shall work for the betterment of the meat industry in the Northwest. This will be accomplished by providing strong, qualified leadership that represents the interests of the meat industry in the legislative halls. In addition, we keep our members informed of developments and matters of development and matters of interest in the meat industry.

News Updates

New Oregon Initiative Petition

Please see the following information about a proposed initiative being circulated in Oregon and reach out to Amy at OHA if you have questions or would like to help fight against this.

Senate Bill on State Inspection Up for Discussion in Washington State

Senate Bill SB638209202020.pdf

A New Home for Meat Science at University of Idaho

Washington State Food Safety Change of Inspection

There has been a change since the seminar at the convention that WSDA and WA State Dept. of Health presented to the attendees.

The NWMPA office received a call on May 28th from a representative from the Washington State Food Safety Division in Olympia. There was a proposal to turn over the game processing and further processing of game to the local county health departments. At the convention the seminar speakers received feedback from the attendees on this proposal. After more study of these changes Washington State has chosen NOT TO turn over this to the local health departments. Washington State processors will receive renewal for the food processor license

per the call on May 28th. The representative from WSFSD did mention that our feedback had a significant impact on the ruling.

NWMPA Apprenticeship Program

The program is moving forward. Eleven processors sent letters of intent; this allows the program to be registered in Washington State and is also recognized by Oregon and Idaho. Troy Wilcox has been our coordinator for this important opportunity for our members. For details and information contact Troy Wilcox,, cell 360-324-6000 or 360-352-1531 or Jerry Haun,, 509-525-6605.

UI announces plan for $8 million meat science center

The University of Idaho on April 22 announced plans to build a new meat science facility on its main campus in Moscow. Agri Beef Co. CEO Robert Rebholtz Jr., in

a Boise announcement event, said the integrated producer, processor and seller will contribute $2 million. With a total construction cost of approximately $8 million, the 15,000-square-foot building is slated to be built on Perimeter Drive near the Kibbie Activity Center. Called the Agri Beef Meat Science and Innovation Center Honoring Ron Richard, the facility will include teaching and research functions as well as Vandal Brand Meats. It will meet growing demand and replace outdated facilities.

Rebholtz said Boise-based Agri Beef strongly supports UI’s goal to create a nationally recognized meat science facility, and looks forward to working with the university and stakeholders. “That is a major undertaking, and a vision we share,” he said. Livestock is a substantial economic contributor in Idaho and the Northwest, Rebholtz said, and UI’s efforts to expand and raise the profile of its meat-science research and education offerings stand to benefit the industry broadly.

UI College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Dean Michael Parrella said Agri Beef’s commitment provides a key foundation for the project. About $3.2 million in support from the industry has been secured for the project so far. It will take about two years to finish raising money and to break ground on the building, which is expected to open in 2022, he said. Demand for the college’s meat science research and educational offerings is strong among students and the industry, Parrella said. More than 90% of UI meat science graduates find jobs in the field.

Phil Bass, assistant professor of meat science, said the new facility will allow for more practical research in a commercial setting while providing additional education space for industry, consumers and the public. Other regional companies and individuals in the industry have shown interest in supporting the project, Parrella said in a news release. Northwest Farm Credit Services committed $200,000. CALS internal funding will also be used.