MAGIC VALLEY — Typically from February to June, Scarrow Meats does not see too many customers walking through their doors to buy meat directly from them, but things have been a little different for them this year.
"On a typical week in May 2019, we would run our kill floor approximately three days a week, we would slaughter approximately five, six seven heads a day, now we're running our kill floor five and six days a week," Don Scarrow, owner of Scarrow Meats, said.
Larger meat processing plants throughout the nation have shut down due to COVID-19 concerns., many of them have had outbreaks within the employees and Don says in these larger plants it's not as easy for them to keep employees six feet apart, forcing them to shut down. This is one of the reasons why there has been a meat shortage in restaurants and in supermarkets.
"So there are 19,000 pigs a day, a five day work week, so now you have 100,000 extra pigs that are not getting processed; that's what supplies the restaurants and the grocery stores. So there's a huge supply of live animals, but we can't get them processed for the restaurants and the grocery stores, it's a bad situation," Scarrow said.
Most of the people walking through the doors of Scarrow Meats are people that have never bought meat from the meat processing center directly. And Scarrow says although this has been a negative situation, they have seen some good come out of it because they have been able to employ more people and give their current employees more hours.
"It's been wonderful on our side because we're not cutting hours, we're adding hours and helping everywhere we possibly can. I feel bad for the restaurant tours and the businesses and the salons and everybody that could not run, it's terrible, horrible. My heart goes out to them.," Scarrow said.