This year Naomi and I are taking the opportunity to raise cattle again in collaboration with my folks. With about ten years of cattle raising experience under my belt this was not a hard decision for me. The only hurdles to overcome were convincing Naomi and finding facilities. Naomi has not been wholly isolated from the beef business, in our area more than a few farms raise cattle, and she and I first dated whilst I was still finishing (last of the fattening process) my last steers. She was only unsure of putting money towards this when we are still looking for our own accommodations.
Once Naomi and I sat down and discussed it I was able to convince her that we would be making money and not taking away from our housing goals she was in. The only thing left to do was to find facilities, decide on how many, and selling the meat.
Luckily, my parents raise a small number of steers each year and were already planning on expanding their footprint to allow more. They currently have four and were going to be buying another four this year. Naomi and I will be allowed to board one with theirs as long as I pay feed and hay costs of the steer along with straw costs and do the chores daily as payment for the housing. All in all it’s a pretty good deal for Naomi and I.
The last hurdle with which we will need to overcome is selling the beef by the summer of 2018. My family has, for years, sold direct to consumer by the quarter. This method while a little more foot work for us it ensures a better price since, we aren’t taking what the market is paying, we choose our price and therefore make much more and the customers know right where their meat came from and can be assured it is quality.
As stated earlier I have a number of years experience raising cattle, Naomi has written about my involvement in 4-H which is where I started. After many years of 4-H and two Grand Champion Dairy Steers, when I became too old to show I ceased raising beef for the past four years. Let me tell ya I have missed it something fierce. Honestly, I can say I am extremely happy to be getting cattle once again even if it is only one to ease back in with, it just feels right.