Iowa members of the armed forces and their families will have a little more on their plates this holiday season, literally, with an unprecedented donation of Pork Care Packages from the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation and Iowa Select Farms.

Every member of all Iowa military units— active duty, reserves and civilian employees – will be receiving $38 worth of coupons good for various pork products— including ham, ribs, bacon and ground pork—through their unit’s Family Readiness Coordinators. In total, more than 12,000 service members will be receiving the coupons, equating to $456,000 in free pork.

“Providing support to military families in Iowa is the least we can do for those on active duty and those who dedicate their time to civilian duty and the reserves,” said Jeff Hansen, president/CEO of Iowa Select Farms. “Supplying the resources for several home-cooked meals that helps bring families together is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to the men and women who sacrifice so much of their time away from their families in order to protect our freedom.”

Employees of Iowa Select Farms delivered the Pork Care Packages to all units of the Iowa National Guard, along with the 132nd Fighter Wing; Iowa Air National Guard; 185th Air Refueling Wing; Iowa Air National Guard; U.S. Army Reserves; U.S. Navy Reserves and U.S. Marine Corps Reserves. Pork Care Packages also were delivered to the Iowa National Guard’s Survivorship Outreach Services to deliver to 600 Iowa families of fallen soldiers.

From ribs and bacon to fresh pork, the coupons in the Pork Care Packages are redeemable at any local grocery store, regardless of the brand or cut. The Pork Care Packages also contain a cookbook titled “Our Favorites” that features pork recipes submitted by Iowa Select Farms employees.

“We asked our employees to send in their favorite family pork recipes to share with the military families and the response was overwhelming,” said Jen Sorenson, Iowa Select Farms communications director. The bright and bold cookbook contains a variety of pork recipes for all of the Pork Care Package products, including glazed ham, bacon pancake cupcakes and apple and ale pork roast.

“The coupons offer a great opportunity for service members to sit down with their families to share a meal during the holidays and through the cold winter months,” Sorenson said. “On top of the Pork Care Package Program, the foundation also will continue the popular Hams for Heroes Program, which delivers fresh pork packs and hams to select units and families.”