Zane Trace FFA Chapter News and Notes — December, 2020

Filling Christmas Care Boxes with FFA Produce
When our FFA Chapter learned that help was needed to fill 50 care boxes with food items for needy ZT families they stepped in to lend a hand. 35 members worked throughout the day on December 14th and 15th to bake cupcakes, brownies, cookies and pies to include in the boxes. Members also divided up 7 bushels of citrus fruit and donated 70 quarts of grape juice that they processed earlier in the fall to the care boxes project. Our chapter is happy to help serve the ZT community and we had a lot of fun making all of the desserts in the food science lab!

Members Host Dog Adoption Day with Ross Co Humane Society
When members of our chapter learned that animal shelters around the US had experienced an increase in the number of dogs being released by their owners, they felt the need to do something about it. They applied for a Living to Serve Grant through the National FFA Association and organized a Dog Adoption Day event held in the ZT Ag Shop on Friday, December 12th.  They also recruited fellow members to help bake over 30 lbs of peanut butter and pumpkin dog treats for donation to the Ross Co Humane Society throughout the week! All of the dogs at the event Saturday found FUR-ever homes!

Chapter Fruit Sale

Anyone who stopped by the ag rooms on Wednesday, December 9th would have seen ten of our members on the fruit sale committee hard at work sorting, labeling and loading fruit and other items for our chapter fundraiser! Students worked on their public relations, communication, accounting and organizational skills throughout the day and were able to distribute over $25,000 worth of inventory to fund chapter activities throughout the school year. This year’s sale was especially educational for the students as they had to process all 139 jars of grape jelly that were sold and adjust the fruit pickup to align with COVID safety protocols and social distancing. The FFA would like to thank everyone who supported the sale this year!

Makin’ Bacon Helps Students Learn Food Processing Skills

Students in the Food Science and Plant & Animal Science classes had the opportunity to learn the skill of meat curing and smoking by working together to process nearly 50 lbs of pork side into delicious bacon! The students started by mixing salt, sugar and sodium nitrite to make a cure. Then they applied the cure to the pork sides, positioned them between Maple slabs and cured them for 9 days. On day 10 the students rinsed off the excess cure and placed the sides in a smoker for 6 hours. After that time the sides were sliced into strips of bacon and the students got to participate in the best part of the project—taste testing! Each food science student took home a bag of bacon for their families and the chapter shared extra bacon with supporters at ZT. The students were taught by Larry Moore, Mrs. Johnston’s dad, who has been making bacon since he was a 9 year old 4-H member competing in the West Virginia State Fair Ham and Bacon contest!

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