One of our most exciting and successful programs was the Mobile Livestock Slaughtering Unit. The MLSU opened up new markets for Northern New Mexico ranchers and dramatically cut costs for producers of cattle, lamb, bison and other livestock. The refrigerated truck did encourage ranchers to take advantage of “healthy market niches at stores and restaurants”. Our local ranchers and livestock growers in the past have been raising ranch fed, healthy meat only to then have to sell it on the hoof for pennies. We wanted to give them a chance to hang onto their lifestyles, land, and water while making a decent living.
The unit was housed in a semi-tractor trailer, driven to the producer’s location and could process up to 10 beef, 80 lambs and 8 buffalo on site. Animals were killed outside the unit, in a humane manner, and then trolleyed inside to be skinned, cleaned and hung for aging. TCEDC’s Hang & Age and Cut & Wrap facility was available for local ranchers and livestock growers to provide niche markets with locally grown meats.The MLSU was a USDA-inspected mobile slaughter house that provided the opportunity for resale of meat. “Mobile Livestock Slaughter Unit” assisted small limited-resource, underserved Hispanic, Native American and female ranchers and farmers with tools and services to enable them to increase income, create jobs and businesses, and promote healthy people in a healthy community. TCEDC utilized $200,000 awarded through the New Mexico Legislature, to build a Mobile Livestock Slaughtering Unit (MLSU) to enhance economic opportunities for limited resource ranchers in Northern New Mexico.