See how Washington beef farmers and ranchers are rethinking the ranch to raise sustainable beef through land-saving, wildlife-preserving, and award-winning environmental efforts.
Lee Ranch has been in Bob Lee's family since 1929, and continuing the emphasis on family, the ranch is now managed by his son, Dan. What's more, Bob's wife Jane, who considers herself "retired," is a shining example of hard work, dedication to the land, and care for animals and people. While acting as an active ranch hand, Jane is also the local Search and Rescue coordinator, and has been a volunteer firefighter for over 40 years. With such hardworking parents to look up to, Dan learned how to be a good steward of the land. The Lees focus on the long-term value of the ranch, and as such, make sure to never overgraze the valuable grasses. Lee Ranch also offers beef directly to consumers, providing beef lovers with a top quality product and connecting them to where their food comes from. As the Lees continue to improve their sustainable practices, one thing is certain- they will always put the land, the cattle, and others first.
"I care for my horses, care for my cows, care for my kids, care for my husband, and care for other people." - Jane Lee, Lee Ranch
Meet Washington rancher Kyler Beard. Along with his wife Judy and daughter Jossie, he is a first generation rancher from Ellensburg, Washington. His partnership with a local brewery is a shining example of working with the resources around him to sustainably produce the delicious beef everyone craves. He feeds his cattle nutritious feed including the grains left over from the brewing process that would otherwise end up in a landfill. To bring the cycle full circle, beef from Kyler's ranch is a fixture on the brewery's tasting room menu.
Home on the range...and in the pasture, and at the feedyard. Raising beef is a complex process, but throughout the entire journey, one thing remains constant – the shared commitment to raising cattle in a safe, humane and environmentally sustainable way. There are more than 9,000 cattle farms and ranches in The Evergreen State, with an average herd size of 40 cattle. Learn more about the people and the process involved in raising beef from the pasture to the plate in Washington.
Washington leads the nation in apple production, but the diverse climate allows Washington farmers to produce over 300 different crops including hops, potatoes, wheat, hay, cherries and grapes.