Missouri hunters donated fewer pounds of deer meat last year.   

State conservation officials say almost 45 hundred hunters contributed 227 thousand pounds of meat to the Share the Harvest Program. It’s the lowest total in five years. The state says the decline may be due to a smaller deer harvest in 2013. Hunters bagged more than 252 thousand deer last year, the lowest total in at least a decade.

Share the Harvest works with processors to distribute meat to food banks and pantries.