Save and Serve: Share the Meat for Victory

Agriculture was Florida’s primary economic contribution to the war effort. The brochure, Save and Serve: Share the Meat for Victory, encourages farmers to grow, process and store their home meat supply.

With recipes for liver pudding and guidelines for how neighbors can form a “Farmer's Beef Club,” farmers are encouraged to “aid the war effort, bring victory and write the peace.”

Bulletin from the Agriculture Extension Service in Gainesville, Florida. (Series 419)

Save and Serve: Share the Meat for Victory

WFF No. 1


(Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914)

Agricultural Extension Service, University of Florida

Florida State College for Women

And United States Department of Agriculture


Wilmon Newell, Director



By W. J. Sheely

Extension Animal Husbandman

Share the Meat for Victory

Despite its biggest production in history, America finds itself facing meat rationing—voluntary at first, perhaps compulsory later. Every citizen, including farmers who butcher and cure meat at home, is requested to adhere to the allowances set up in the country’s share the meat program and limit his consumption so that others may have an equal amount.

Only strong people in the best state of nutrition will be able to win the peace and rebuild this war-torn world. In order that our fighting forces and those of our Allies may have sufficient meat, and that every American citizen may have nutritious meals, our Government requests everyone to share the meat and to limit his consumption.

The Ration.—2 ½ pounds per week for each adult. 1 ½ pounds per week for each child 6 to 12 years old. ¾ pound per week for each child under 6 years old.

This is about the same amount of meat the average person ate during the 10-year period 1931-1940. It applies to red meats only, and does not include fish, poultry, and animal organs such as liver, heart, tongue, sweetbreads.

Why Rationing is Needed.—Record production has not kept pace with record demand. America’s 1942 meat production is estimated at 24 billion pounds. Our Army, Navy, and Lend-Lease require 6 ½ billion pounds of this, leaving 17 ½ billion pounds for civilian use. With more people employed than ever before, most of them enjoying high wages, the tremendous demand for meat has grown out of bounds.


Farmers have a threefold duty in connection with the current meat situation:

1. They must continue to produce as much beef and pork as they can. They must produce for our armed forces, for Lend-Lease, and for home consumption. By doing this they will aid the war effort, bring victory, and write the peace.
2. They must see that no meat is lost through spoilage or carelessness—no meat is lost for any reason—after it is produced.
3. They must limit meat consumption by members of their families to the average national allowance. Those families not now eating as much meat as the national allowance are not asked to reduce consumption still further.


Farmers who grow, process, and store their home meat supply are serving the war effort in several ways:

1. They are preserving the health of their families.
2. They are relieving the congested transportation facilities.
3. They are relieving labor at packing-houses.
4. They are relieving cold storage space at packing plants in favor of Lend-Lease and war meat.
5. They are, by permitting retail stores to care for the needs of town customers only, helping morale.
6. They enjoy definite independence, satisfaction, and a feeling of financial security when they have sufficient meat in the smoke house.

The farm meat supply calls for putting into practice the best known methods of killing, curing, cold storage, and canning of meats. This is not a time for experiment, but rather for the use of information in hand that has been proven correct. Farm families should be supplied with pork and beef for an adequate diet.


Medium fat young hogs weighing 150 to 225 pounds are most desirable for home dressed meats. They produce hams and shoulders weighing 8 to 12 pounds and loins and bacon weighing 7 to 12 pounds, and yield about 12 to 25 pounds of lard.

The economy of curing pork into savory hams, bacon, loins, and shoulders for home use is greatly facilitated by observing a few precautions.

Give hogs plenty of water but no feed 12 to 24 hours before killing. Never kill a hot hog. Stick hog without stunning or shooting it, for most satisfactory bleeding.

As soon as the hog is dead, scald at a temperature of 145 to 150 degrees. Clean, dress, pull out leaf fat, split the carcass down the center and get it to cold storage or a cold place as quickly as possible. If cold storage is not available, pack the warm meat in cracked ice. Warm, freshly slaughtered pork carcasses should be chilled to a temperature between 34 and 40 degrees within 24 hours.

Meat cured at a temperature about 38 degrees F. will develop a more uniform, desirable flavor than if the temperature goes too high.

For mild, dry cure, with each 100 pounds of trimmed meat use 8 pounds of salt, 2 pounds of sugar (or 2 pints of syrup) and 2 ounces of saltpeter. Mix these ingredients, rub each piece of meat separately on both sides, covering with the mixture. Pack the meat away with the skin side down, putting hams and shoulders on bottom, loins and bacon on top. The loins and bacon should not be covered as thickly with the curing mixture as the hams and shoulders. An 8 to 10-pound ham will cure in 25 to 30 days. Loins will cure in a few days less and bacon will cure in 20 days. When meat is cured, soak and scrub off the salt, hang in a cool, dry place to dry, then smoke with hardwood—oak, hickory, or pecan. The soaked pieces should be wrapped each piece in parchment paper then slipped into a muslin bag to protect from insects, and be hung in a cool, dry place.

During hog killing time, excess pork may be canned (see Extension Bulletin 87, Canning Meat).

Liver Pudding.—The liver, heart, kidney, tongue, head, feet, and skin can be used fresh or cooked, seasoned, and stuffed for future use as liver pudding.

Cook heads, kidneys, tongues, and hearts, skins and feet in sufficient water to cover all parts. Simmer until meat is well done and slips easily from the bone. Scald livers last and cook about 10 minutes in with other materials. Liver adds a definite flavor, and there should be 1 part liver to 4 parts of other meat.

Grind all these materials and add about one-fifth as much soup (broth), or enough to make the mixture soft but not sloppy. Season to taste and mix thoroughly. Many meat eaters like the following portions of seasoning: To each 100 pounds of liver pudding add 2 to 2 ½ pounds of salt, 2 to 4 ounces of black pepper, and sage to taste.

Thoroughly mix in the seasoning, stuff the mixture into large casings, and simmer in water 10 to 30 minutes or until the casing floats. Remove from hot water, plunge the stuffed casings in cold water, and chill for about 30 minutes. Hang up the casing to drain and store in cool place.

Rendering and Storing Lard.—The leaf fat, back fat and fat trimmings should be cut into small pieces or coarsely ground before cooking. The caul and ruffle fat from the offal yield dark lard and should be cooked separately from the leaf fat. Cook the fat slowly till cracklings begin to float. As the cooking proceeds the cracklings begin to sink to bottom, indicating that cooking is nearly complete. Take care that the cracklings do not scorch, but drive most of the moisture from the lard.

Place hot lard in clean containers, fill the vessels to the top and seal with tight cover. Store lard in a dark, cool place.


Fresh beef at minimum cost each week or every other week is possible through Farmer’s Beef Club. Farmers living within reach of cold storage meat curing plants may take advantage of these facilities by storing their fresh beef.

A few neighbors ever so often can kill a beef and divide it among themselves with no outlay of cash. The club is usually composed of 8 to 16 families and operates usually 8 to 16 weeks. The period of operation is decided upon by the members.

One animal is killed each week or every other week by some member of the club and divided among the members. In the 8 member club, the beef carcass is divided into 8 parts, each member getting a certain part in such a manner that when the season closes, every family has received a whole beef.

Cutting the Carcass.—It is essential that the cutting and dividing of the carcass be simple. In an 8 member club the carcass is split down the center and divided into quarters as is usual in slaughtering beef. Each quarter is divided—the hind quarter on a line that removes the loin from the round without trimming the flank. The front quarter is cut between the third and fourth ribs. Following these directions will divide the carcass into 8 pieces with approximately equal weights.

Very little bookkeeping is necessary. The only records that need to be kept are the order in which each member should kill an animal, the weight of the animal the member kills, and the weight of the cuts each member gets.

Extra beef may be canned or cured for future use. See Experiment Station Bulletin 321 for curing beef and Extension Bulletin 51 for canning meat.

Save and Serve: Share the Meat for Victory