Alleghany Meats is a USDA-inspected, Animal Welfare Approved value-added slaughter and processing facility established in 2012 that processes beef, bison, hog, goat, and lamb. We provide quality meat processing options in the Alleghany Highlands region of Virginia and West Virginia and bring producers and consumers closer together.
We work with our customers to offer the finest quality USDA-inspected and custom meat processing options, including smoked products. To learn about our processes or how to become a customer read about our services or contact us.
Highland County, Virginia is one of the least populated areas east of the Mississippi River. Straddling the border with Pocahontas and Pendleton Counties in West Virginia, the mountainous county has less than 2,300 residents. What the area lacks in people it makes up for in determination, resourcefulness, and community-minded creativity. Alleghany Meats began in 2004 when local sheep farmers Jim and Maggie Morse received a USDA grant to produce and market gourmet lamb-burgers. The biggest hurdle in getting their product to consumers was the lack of an easily accessible USDA-inspected slaughter facility.
This led to the creation of a steering committee comprised of area cooperative extensions, the non-profit The Highland Center, and local producer organizations to research the feasibility of such a facility. Over the years they secured land for the site and eventually raised $1.8 million to construct the facility.
In 2009 an LLC was established and in 2010 nearly 100 shares of stock were sold, with most of the buyers being farmers. Construction was completed in 2012 and the first animals were killed on March 19, 2012. Upon opening, Matt Lohr, former Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture, said that he came across many communities that talked about the need for a processing facility, but few had the passion and local investment. “It’s exciting to be in the least populated county in our state and to see such a state of the art facility.” U.S. Congressman Bob Goodlatte reiterated Lohr’s sentiments: “These farmers had a vision: ‘We can do something for ourselves’.”
“Every time it looked like something would stand in the way, or we’d come up short,someone would step up to get us over the hurdle,” says Rodney Leech, Bath-Highland Extension Agent. He cites the dedication of nearly 150 local volunteers who collectively gave 15,000 hours of service to the project.
American Association of Meat Processors
Highland County Chamber of Commerce
Highland Sheep and Wool Producers Association
Highland/Bath Cattle Association
Highland County and Regional Farmers’ Markets
Faces of Farmers
Fields of Gold
Niche Meat Processor Assistance Network
Animal Welfare Approved & Humane Handling Certified
Eastern Bison Association