Our family raised livestock on this land since 1866, for five generations. That is commitment.
In 1995, we decided that the right thing to do for our cattle herd would be to transition to a grass-fed pastured program. We gave up feeding grain, hormone implants, and antibiotics. Making this change flew in the face of the tried-and-true way of raising cattle, but we did it. That is commitment.
In 2000, we decided that the right thing to do for our land would be to cease using chemical fertilizers and pesticides. It was economically painful, but we did it. That is commitment.
In 2005, we decided that the right thing to do for our animals and for our customers would be to build our on-farm USDA-inspected beef abattoir. There was only one other in the country. It was an enormous economic risk, but we took it. That is commitment.
In 2010, we decided that it was wrong for our land and our herd to operate a monoculture of cattle. We acquired a herd of sheep, and later flocks of poultry. It was an incredibly steep learning curve, but we did it. That is commitment.
In 2011, we decided that it would be necessary to construct an on-farm USDA-inspected poultry abattoir. We added ducks, geese, guineas, and turkeys to our flocks. It was another incredible economic risk and another steep learning curve, but we did it. That is commitment.
We are now certain that this journey to do the right things for our land and animals is endless. We will come to realize that there are other steps that we must take, and as we figure out what these next steps are, we will take them. That is because we are committed.
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