hunting-deer-mdPEORIA – A new law sponsored by State Senator Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) strongly encourages hunters to donate the meat from the game animals they kill if they aren't going to eat it themselves.

"It's very easy for hunters to donate meat to charity if they don't want to eat it themselves or share it with friends and family," Koehler said. "Most responsible hunters already make sure that the animals they kill don't go to waste – we just want to encourage everyone to do the same."

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources operates the highly successful Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger Program, which allows hunters to donate venison and other meat to food banks and other charities throughout Illinois. The program has provided 3.5 million meals to hungry families. To learn more about the program or to find a local participating meat processor, visit www.dnr.illinois.gov.

"I've seen hunters leave three or four partially butchered deer along the road, in view of everyone that drives by. We hope to encourage hunters to donate deer to the Sportsmen against Hunger program," said Sgt. Jamie Mauler, who works for the department.

Specifically, Koehler's proposal:

  • Prohibits throwing away edible, easily processed meat from game animals that hunters don't want to keep for themselves. This specifically includes unspoiled breast meat of birds and front and back haunches of mammals.
  • Prohibits dumping or abandoning the carcasses of animals killed by hunters on public property (or private property without the permission of the owner).
  • Establishes that violators of this law can be charged with a Class B Misdemeanor.
Category: Press Releases

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