UNR temporarily closes meat plant and seeks outside supplier to resume operations

The University of Nevada, Reno is seeking an outside company to operate its long-standing Wolf Pack Meats slaughterhouse and meat processing plant.

Carson Now reported today that UNR has announced it is temporarily closing the factory to find a supplier to resume operations.

UNR cited financial instability — the facility struggled for decades to maintain sustainable operation — as the reason for the closure.

Carson Now reported:

“The temporary closure will allow maintenance of the facilities,” said [UNR’s Shauna] The best. “These facility improvements, combined with a new production operations provider, will allow Wolf Pack Meats to reopen as a more robust facility better able to serve the needs of the Nevada ranching community, increasing the production capacity and lead times.”

However, a source who wished not to be named said the news was not welcome for some Wolf Pack Meats employees who were rumored to have left the processing plant when news of the 9 September has arrived.

However, when asked if employees quit en masse, Wolf Pack Meats said they would not comment.

“Friday, employees of Wolf Pack Meats were informed of the timing of the temporary closure,” Lemieux said. “Other than that, we cannot comment on confidential personal matters.”

Regardless of employee issues, Lemieux reiterated that production is still expected to continue through October 31.

The plant was recently cited by the USDA for inhumane animal handling, according to a Nevada Current report. This was the second such notice in recent years at the facility.

A UNR spokesperson for UNR said it implemented a corrective action plan that included “retraining with senior management and verification of performance improvement. The University of Nevada, Reno takes animal welfare very seriously and maintains AAALAC accreditation at all of its facilities, which is the benchmark accreditation for animal welfare.

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Wolf Pack Meats is one of two USDA-approved meat processing facilities in Nevada. It serves as the teaching center for UNR’s meat science program. It was processing about 3,000 animals a year in 2020, but increased that production to 120% of normal during the pandemic to meet local food demand.