Tangle Ridge Ranch is inspiring. Though about as young a couple as I’ve met farming to date and not having grown up with parents that farmed, Vicky and Shayne sport agriculture degrees and farm industry experience – and have chosen land stewardship rather than veterinary science as their path to raising healthy animals.
I’ve been waiting to see my first rotational grazing setup, and I’m still taken aback. It’s simple, sensible, practical, and effective – and it leaves me wondering why more farms aren’t set up this way. It’s about as good for land fertility as you can get, promotes biodiversity, is a quick farm chore [half hour every 2 days], and eliminates chores like manure shoveling/spreading, overgrazing of land, and feed handling and cost. I’m sure it has its cons, but that’s a pretty serious list of pros.
Citing capital and financing hurdles as the biggest obstacle to young folks getting into farming – banks want farming-parent collateral to approve financing of land, and aren’t interested in credentials or a well developed business plan – these two have found ways to make it work, are raising a young family, and a whole lot of little sheep families. They, once again, make me proud of the direction folks in my generation are taking farming.