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Organic Consumers Association

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Home on the Range

It’s a common assumption: Anywhere cattle are grazing, land—and biodiversity—are being destroyed.

That assumption is 100-percent correct, if you’re talking about the cattle raised for Big Meat giants like Cargill and JBS.

But it’s dead wrong if you’re talking about ranchers like the Elzinga family, who run Alderspring Ranch in May, Idaho. After a recent visit to Alderspring Ranch, Linley Dixon, associate director of Real Organic Project, wrote:

“The cattle at Alderspring never stand still. They graze as they slowly move, strategically guided by the Elzingas on horseback, across the high elevation sagebrush steppe . . . The herd’s continuous movements mimic the impact of the 50-90 million buffalo that once helped to shape the carbon sequestering American grasslands.”

By intentionally herding their cattle to mimic the movements of buffalo herds that grazed the same lands decades ago, the Elzinga family is actually restoring the rangelands.

“While most beef cattle graze monoculture pastures, those at Alderspring Ranch graze ‘a salad bar’ of over 2,500 different plant species.”

Real Organic Project’s video of Alderspring Ranch includes gorgeous scenery—and an important lesson for environmentalists and consumers on regenerative grazing.

Read 'What Do a Rancher and Vegan Have in Common?'

Watch the video on Alderspring Ranch

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