O X Ranch Suspends Sales of Local 100% Grass Fed Beef
To our O X Ranch Grass Fed Beef customers:
First, we want to thank those of you who have purchased and enjoyed O X Ranch Grass Fed Beef. We hope you have found the product delicious and satisfying.
For more than 20 years, the owners and staff of the O X Ranch have worked in collaboration with numerous state and federal agencies, as well as environmental organizations, to preserve and improve the natural resources of the high desert in which we are located. In the process we have also developed what we believe to be an outstanding herd of cattle by utilizing exemplary breeding practices and implementing the latest scientific advances including DNA testing, use of genetic markers, beef carcass analysis and the Beef Quality Assurance Program.
Approximately two years ago we decided that marketing our high quality beef to local consumers provided us with an opportunity to obtain a premium for that quality and we began to market local 100% Grass Fed Angus Beef over the internet and through local meat shops. Our goal was to produce an excellent local product with which customers could develop a connection – even visiting the ranch and seeing the environment in which these cattle thrive. As a result, we have acquired several hundred satisfied customers. In spite of our success, however, we have encountered a number of unanticipated problems over which we have no control.
1. There are few beef processing facilities available to process locally produced beef. These facilities have a limited capacity - and there is little prospect of this situation improving in the near future.
2. There are a limited number of local retail meat shops with the desire or ability to supply custom cuts of fresh grass fed beef.
3. Current government regulations allow almost all feedlot beef to be called “Grass Fed” and some of the same feedlot beef to be called “Organic”. These regulations make it impossible for the consumer to make an informed choice and make it difficult for local grass fed producers to justify the price premium necessary to cover the extra cost of producing 100% grass fed beef.
In light of these circumstances, we have concluded that we cannot continue to expand our grass fed beef program without getting into the processing and retailing of our product. Accordingly, we have decided to suspend our grass fed beef program and refocus our attention and energy on the health and biodiversity of our ranch and the genetics of our herd.
We very much appreciate the enthusiastic support we have received from our grass fed customers and urge them, as well as others, to continue to support the industry by purchasing from the many other outstanding local grass fed beef producers.
O X Ranch Management
September 1st, 2010.
O X Ranch