The USDA defines the term “natural” as foods that are minimally processed without artificial ingredients. We feel that’s a great start, however we take it a step further and commit to raising all of our cattle without the use of antibiotics or hormones and feed them only a vegetarian diet with no animal bi-products.
Being a natural operation takes dedication as we’re constantly riding through our cattle to assess their overall health and looking for possible issues that might arise due to environmental changes. As cattle are a living, breathing animal, there are times—no matter how much we try to prevent sickness—that an animal gets sick to the point of needing antibiotics. Does this mean we just ignore it and let them suffer? The answer to that is a resounding NO. We do treat the animal, however that animal then gets a green button tag in its ear. We also record their individual tag ID number for our records. The green button is front and center for anyone to see and it signifies that the animal has been doctored. In addition, we have the animal’s tag ID listed in our computer program stating that it has been doctored with antibiotics. This animal then gets culled (taken out of the program) and gets sold as commodity and will no longer be in our natural program.
As part of our natural program, we chose to be audited by various third party outside organizations. Designations we have received are:
- Accredited by IMI Global certifying us for Humane Export Capabilities
- Non Hormone Treated Cattle (NHTC) export audit
- Also we do a Humanely Handled (HH) internal audit with Meyer Natural Foods.
To look at the Humanely Handled standards manual used for Meyer Natural Foods, please click here
As previously stated, the calves from Meyer Company Ranch go into the Meyer Natural Angus program each year. As part of educating customers and consumers the Meyer Natural Foods sales team brings corporate guests to the ranch each year. They have found that by showing the day to day operations of the ranch to the people who are buying and selling the beef, they have a better understanding of everything that goes into the end product. They can then communicate how much love and care goes in to the beef that they are buying.
SPREADING THE WORD
In the past we have hosted groups and organizations who were interested in learning more about how we operate at Meyer Company Ranch. We find people are most interested in seeing how we use the bud box and always love to go and take a look at the cattle, which we’re more than happy to oblige.