Fun fact about the beef community – we’re (mostly) segmented. This means that there are a few stops along the way from pasture to plate. So, I recently teamed up with some awesome folks on Instagram to take you on a little tour, a tour that we lovingly dubbed the Pasture to Plate Tour.
We started the tour with seedstock and ended with retail, making a stop at each step from pasture to plate along the way. Anyway, I thought it would be fun to bring the tour here too. I’ve included a snippet of each tour stop, but be sure to click the photos to get the full story. 😉
First Stop: Seedstock
Caroline Holt, of Holt Farms, (a.k.a. the brains behind the Pasture to Plate Tour) kicked us off giving us the rundown of what the term seedstock means. She also gave us a brief behind the scenes look into their farm.
“We raise Registered Angus cattle so we fall into the seedstock category, which is where the beef journey really starts. While we sell some feeder calves and a few replacement heifers, our main product is genetics through our bulls. We provide commercial cattle operations around the country with bulls that will produce the calves that become beef!”
Second Stop: Commercial Cow Calf
I had the privilege of being the second stop on the tour – the commercial cow calf stop.
“The ranch we call home is often referred to as a commercial cow calf ranch because our main focus is raising calves that will go on to produce beef, rather than breeding stock.”
Third Stop: Backgrounder or Stocker
In some cases, calves spend time with backgrounders, or stockers, to grow for a short time before heading to the feed yard. Marion Wine, of Wine Feeders, LLC, gave us a look into their backgrounding operation.
“Our focus is to supply our buyers with hearty calves that have overcome stresses from weaning, dehorning, vaccinating, and if required, individual doctoring.”
Fourth Stop: Feed Yard
Cain Madrigal gave us a glimpse into the cattle feeding segment of the beef community sharing his experience as a feed yard manager.
“I’m the manager at Smith Valley Cattle Feeders in Smith, Nevada (Capacity 15,000). SVCF is a backgrounding yard that feeds cattle for Harris Ranch in Coalinga, CA.”
Fifth Stop: Retailer
Natalie and JaTanna, of Ranch Wives Beef Co, shared their expertise as beef retailers.
“Our company mission is to take the quality ranch raised beef our families have been enjoying for decades, harvest and process it at trusted local USDA facilities and then deliver it with a trusted and familiar face for you and your family to enjoy. “
As the Ranch Wives eluded to in their post (if you haven’t, you should totes click through the entire tour), we recognize that we are all but small drops in the bucket that is the great beef community. We’re a pretty diverse bunch and no two ranchers, backgrounders, feeders, or retailer do things in exactly the same way.
That’s why we’re encouraging our peers in the beef community to start using #pasturetoplatetour to showcase their operations on Instagram. And we’re encouraging everyone to follow the hashtag – so we can all connect from pasture to plate!