What goes into creating and running a successful cattle ranch famous for its top notch quality and efficiency?

No one can answer this question more comprehensively than Glenn Elzinga… and it just so happens he is our guest on this episode of the Thriving Farmer Podcast! 

Challis Idaho’s very own Glenn Elzinga is the owner and operator of Alderspring Ranch Organic Grass Fed Beef, a family ranch (don’t you dare call it a farm!) devoted to standing far apart from the corn fed GMO-infused standard and raising only the very best grass fed beef you’ve ever tasted. We simply couldn’t resist making this episode significantly longer than our typical runtime because Glenn has so much invaluable information to share with us about how to optimally run a premium cattle ranch. Tune in to soak up 28 years of knowledge and experience!

You’ll Hear:

How Glenn got started in ranching 6:35

Why Glenn is glad God didn’t answer his prayers 15:21

What a typical day on Alderspring Ranch looks like 19:31

What if you have wolves around your ranch? 29:17

Why many see the need to bring back the ancient tradition of living with your animals 37:52

How Glenn is doing his part in the fight against climate change 46:16

Why most ranchers embrace the idea of going organic, but don’t think to do it themselves 1.01:15

What are the specifics of Alderspring’s land and how does Glenn manage his cattle? 1.04:34

Why Glenn feeds his cattle such a diverse array of plants 1.23:15

What Glenn would change in his systems given the chance to go back in time 1.31:54

What is the labor arrangement like at Alderspring Ranch? 1.43:01

How Alderspring Ranch goes about marketing, telling their story and building trustful, mutually auspicious relationships 1.46:16

How does the Crowd Cow business model affect small farms/ranches? 2.01:57

What are the biggest mistakes that Glenn sees new farmers/ranchers making? 2.09:03

What is Glenn’s favorite farming tool? 2.16:42

How Alderspring gets use out of drones 2.20:44

Where you can find out more about Glenn Elzinga and Alderspring Ranch 2.25:31

About the Guest

Glenn Elzinga, with his wife and business partner Caryl started Alderspring Ranch near Salmon, Idaho, in 1992, with the purchase of 147 acres and 7 cows. They began direct marketing grass fed and finished beef in 1993 with 2 head. From these humble beginnings Alderspring Ranch has grown to a 7 figure direct marketing enterprise and a 1700 acre ranch with a 46,000 acre wild rangeland permit. The entire operation is certified organic, including the 46,000 acres of permit land.

Glenn and Caryl run the ranch with their 7 daughters, a stellar son-in-law, and some exceptional employees. The ranch markets 100% of its production, 300-400 head a year, through an internet storefront at Alderspring.com and natural food stores.

Resources and mentions

Alderspring Ranch Organic Grass Fed Beef Website, Facebook, Instagram

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We also have six free eguides to help you be more effective on your farm (Winter Growing, Pastured Poultry, Washing Shed Efficiency, Profitable Farmers Toolkit, what to look for in a farm property, etc), which you can download here.