Dale Phillips, owner of Phillips Meat Processing in Zanesville, says deer gun week is a busy week for his family-owned and operated business. Instead of their normal 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule, Phillips Meats is open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. through Sunday to meet the needs of hunters.
"We get all the deer in at one time and we have to sort it out and get it all done quickly," said Phillips. "With the temperatures the way they are, it's hard to get it all in. We'll do between 500 and 600 this week. And we have close to 200 in right now."
With the warmer temperatures and the busy week ahead of them, Phillips has hired 8 extra people to help get them through the week. How it works is hunters drop off their deer with their confirmation number, each deer gets a tag and is processed one-by-one, a process Phillips says only takes about 10 minutes. Hunters choose what cuts they want, but some hunters decide to donate their deer to the Hunters and Farmers Feed the Hungry Program.
"We've donated I think, I'm guessing right around 70 deer so far for that program and they go directly to Christ's Table and they distribute to all the pantries in Muskingum County."
Phillips Meats also processes custom beef and hog year-round and sells local meats at their Ridge Road resale store. The leftover scraps of the deer are purchased by a rendering company and made into lipstick and soap. You can call Phillips Meats at 740-453-3337 for more information.