Roots of Resilience

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Marketing Sessions at Northwest Grazing Conference 2017

photo with close up of grass in foreground and cows eating in mid-ground

Cows dining on good organic grass at Pride and Joy Dairy. Photo courtesy of Pride and Joy Dairy

Get the Most Value from Your Grass-Based Meat,  Dairy, Wool, and Leather

Marketing Your Sustainably-Raised Products

You put extra work and investment into your farm or ranch. You create healthy soil, healthy landscapes, and healthy animals. And high-quality, healthy products for your customers.

How do you market those products to earn a living and invest back into your operation?

Check out these marketing sessions at Managing for Resilience: Northwest Grazing Conference 2017.

Getting Your Good Meat to Market: Processing, Pricing, and Marketing

You go through the effort to produce high quality meat. Now you need to sell it in order to sustain your grass farming livelihood. In this workshop, Rebecca Thistlethwaite of the Niche Meat Processing Assistance Network and Tracy Smaciarz of Heritage Meats will give marketing tips. They’ll talk about working with your processor, developing good cutting instructions, packaging and labeling tips, selecting market channels, building a brand, and pricing strategies.

Rebecca is a farm and sustainability consultant. She’s the author of Farms with a Future: Creating and Growing a Sustainable Farm Business, Chelsea Green Publishing. 2013, and The New Livestock Farmer: The Business of Raising and Selling Ethical Meat, Chelsea Green Publishing, June, 2015. In addition to presenting a workshop, she will have her books available for purchase and signing at the conference.

Tracy is president and head butcher of Heritage Meats, a business begun by Tracy’s father in 1977. Tracy helps independent small growers market their meat products to local restaurants and retailers.

Tracy’s collaborations include Full Circle Farm, the largest Community Supported Agriculture program in Washington State,  and world-renowned Canlis restaurant chef Jason Franey.

Grass-Fed Dairy Marketing

Allen Voortman, owner of Pride and Joy Dairy in Granger, Washington, will lead a session on dairy marketing. Pride and Joy Dairy is the rare certified organic raw-milk dairy in Washington State. They are totally grass-based and market their products directly to consumers.

Voortman’s presentation at our field day last fall was hugely popular and we’re please to have him back for the Grazing Conference.

Land-to-Market Program

The Roots of Resilience team will introduce the new Land-to-Market (L2M) program being prototyped by the Savory Institute. Land to Market will provide verification to consumers for meat, dairy, leather, and wool. It’s designed to create a production system and market for products that regenerate land and human health.

The L2M program is developing an ecological outcome verification tool to allow robust measurements of key indicators of ecosystem health. Come to this session to learn how you can participate.

Register Now for Northwest Grazing Conference 2017

Find out more and register for Managing for Resilience: Northwest Grazing Conference 2017 on the main conference page.

Grazing Conference Early Registration Deadline Extended

Closeup photo of grasses and forbs

NRCS photo by Tracy Robillard

Good News Procrastinators!

Grazing Conference Early Registration Extended to April 26

Too busy filing your income taxes to register for Northwest Grazing Conference 2017? We understand. Just for you, we’ve extended the early registration deadline to April 26.

If you’ve been planning to sign up but haven’t gotten around to it, now’s your chance.

More conference info on our main conference page, or

Click on this Register now button to register for the conference

Thank You Conference Sponsors

Soil Builder

Logo for Country Natural Beef Co-opInnovator

Southworth Brothers Ranch

Pacific Intermountain Mortgage Company

Grazing Conference 2015

Grassland Management Featured At Conference

Planned multi-paddock grazing restored soil and vegetation, increased productivity and profitability, while improving the quality of life for ranchers, reported Dr. Richard Teague, Rangeland Research Scientist at Texas A & M University. Teague was the keynote speaker at the grazing conference, Roots of Resilience, held in May at the Washington Family Ranch near Antelope, Oregon.

 

The grazing conference was sponsored by Country Natural Beef, Washington Family Ranch and the Pacific Northwest Center for Holistic Management (PNCHM).

 

Teague’s research involves whole ranch units in which the managers are monitoring and adjusting their activities in order to achieve their goals relating to the nutrition and health of soils, plants, animals and the people involved.

 

He told about a grassland restoration that was accomplished over a ten-year period on the Noble Foundation’s Coffey Ranch. Animal unit days per acre, which is a measure of grassland’s livestock carrying capacity, increased to more than three times its original amount. Teague said the success was achieved by managing for desired outcomes. This type of management is accomplished by having an adequate number of pasture divisions or paddocks so that plant exposure to grazing is for a short time and plants have adequate time for regrowth before being grazed again.

 

Most of the conference attendees stayed a second day and took in one of two workshops that were offered. Planned grazing was taught by father-daughter team, Maurice and Beth Robinette, of the Lazy R Ranch near Cheney, WA. A workshop on grassland monitoring was taught by a team led by Tip Hudson, WSU Extension Rangeland Specialist, and Sandra Matheson, manager of a beef cattle operation near Bellingham, Washington.20150509_5

 

Evaluations from the individual participants showed that a majority of attendees want to learn more about planned grazing, biological monitoring and land planning. Financial planning was another topic of interest. PNCHM plans to follow-up with conference participants and schedule additional workshops.

 

Teague emphasizes the importance of creating an annual grazing plan for the individual ranch, utilizing what was learned from previous years. He has found that ranch management decisions should be based on a goal; land restoration and wildlife needs are to be incorporated into the plan each year; managers should regularly assess the forage available and adjust either stock numbers or the area grazed; and grazing periods should be based on the recovery rate of the plants, which change by season during the growing year.

 

Planned grazing includes annual planning, monitoring, adjusting as needed and focusing on the triple bottom line, caring for the environment, making a profit and being socially responsible.