Listen to the show on the NPR.ORG Podcast Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer: Check out this episode!
Cattle are definitely king in Nebraska. Cows outnumber humans four to one, and the State claims America’s number-one cow county, Cherry County that is. Overshadowed by Nebraska’s legendary beef industry is the up and coming market for buffalo.
Back in 1804 when Lewis & Clark traipsed across the West en route to the Pacific it’s estimated that 50 million roamed the Great Plains, but tragically by the end of the 19th Century less than 500 remained. In the dawning days of the 20th Century, when the state of South Dakota started a quest to reintroduce Buffalo they actually had to source some of their stock from the Bronx Zoo. Today, according to the National Bison Association, there’s an estimated 500,000 buffalo in America. Across Nebraska you’ll find more and more ranchers specializing in buffalo.
A prime reason for Buffalo’s resurgence is its superior qualities as a commercial meat product. Buffalo has approximately 35 percent more protein and half the calories of beef, and there’s only 1.8 grams of fat per 3 oz serving, compared to 8.7 grams in beef.
We’ll stop at the Krecik Elk and Buffalo Ranch in Niobrara, located in Northeast Nebraska for a visit with Stacy Krecik Miller. She says the demand for buffalo meat is so high that processers from Colorado will send out truck and trailer rigs to pick up her buffalo.
One of the State’s earliest advocates of organic, sustainable, grass fed ranching and farming is Dave Hutchinson and his family. They have been farming and ranching organically in the Sandhills region around Rose, Nebraska for more than 30 years. In addition to farming seasonal crops, Hutchinson’s passion is his sustainable, organic grass fed Buffalo operation. Come along and meet Dave at the Hutchinson Family Organic Farm.
To listen to a series of cool Western Nebraska “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer” shows, including Fort Robinson, Scotts Bluff, Carhenge, Cabelas, canoeing, and more:http://www.westnebraska.com/May-2014/Journeys-of-Discovery-with-Tom-Wilmer/
For further information about everything Nebraska Nice: www.visitnebraska.com