What is Life Like on the Beyond Organic Ranch?
In May, my husband Danny & I, along with fellow team mates – Gail Bowman and her husband David, joined 20 other members of the Leadership Council for an opportunity of a lifetime. We got to visit the Beyond Organic Ranches in Koshkonong, MO. We just had to share some of the great things that we learned with all of you. It’s one thing to hear about the Beyond Organic Ranches, but it was so amazing to see first hand how well these ranches are run and how beautiful the land is! The crucial key to Beyond Organic is exactly that from the ground up – we are “beyond organic”.
One of the things that really impressed us, was the way the cattle are cared for and treated. All the cattle are out on pasture; even the dairy cows. When it is time for the dairy cows to be milked, a cowboy rides out on his horse and moves the next group of cows slowly from their pasture, down a column of fences and into the milking barn. When all the cattle in that group have been milked, he encourages them back to their pasture and goes to get the next group. These cows knew exactly what to do!
It was a sweet experience to be on the ranch during calving season. We got to see cows ready to give birth and calves newly born! Some of the calves stay with their moms out on the pasture when they are born, but many are raised on bottles. The calves that are going to be carefully raised to be milkers or breeders are raised by hand. They receive colostrum, and then real fresh raw milk from a bottle. They are never kept in little calf houses like dog houses. Not even when they are very young. The youngest calves are raised in pens that are about 12 ft by 25 ft with about 5 calves to a pen. As they grow, they are transferred to larger and larger pens and then pastures. All the calves are on fresh grass and there is no manure build up in the pens. It was an amazingly clean environment!
The adult cattle, whether they are being milked or not, are out grazing in the pasture. They truly are never fed grain! They are fenced with a single electric wire that is attached to movable posts. About 5 times a day, the posts are moved and the cattle move on to fresh pasture. The grasses in the fresh areas were well over a foot tall before the cattle started munching! Check out our video of Ultra High Density Grazing. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50MoC2RB8GY&feature=plcp
The genetic make-up of the Beyond Organic cattle was fascinating. Jordan Rubin is raising cattle that do not have the mutated A1 Casein gene and that will thrive and produce on grass. We saw a wide variety of cattle, all being bred carefully into the mix for their specific strengths. These included Brahma for their toughness, Holstein for milk production, Short Horn for ability to thrive on pasture, Angus for meat production, and Guernsey ad Jersey for high quality butter fat production
After such an inspiring weekend, we left there impressed and proud to be a part of such a well ranch from Beyond Organic. We have more to share – so look for our future posts!
Kim & Danny Butler
Founding Mission Marketers and Senior Vice Presidents with Beyond Organic
Learn more @ www.kimbutler.livebeyondorganic.com