Tuesday, October 30, 2007

McEwen Organic Cattle Supplier to Dakota Beef

150,000-Acre Historic Eastern Oregon Ranch Certified Organic

McEwen Ranch Becomes Largest Pure Organic Angus Ranch in Country

BURNS, Ore., Oct. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- The historic McEwen Ranch
announces today its 150,000 plus acres have been certified organic by the
USDA's National Organic Program. This is the culmination of a three-year
process during which the land must be free of all chemical inputs such as
fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides. With its organic certification, the
McEwen ranch, which at one time was a part of the historic Miller-Lux
cattle empire of the late 1800's, is believed to be the largest
organic-certified ranch in the United States. It is also one of the finest
organic grass ranches in the Pacific Northwest, with extensive and
high-quality native grass cover throughout. The managers of the ranch have
negotiated an exclusive deal with Dakota Beef, the nation's leading organic
beef provider, for all the cattle the ranch can produce.

The organic certification of the McEwen Ranch marks an important step
forward for the organic beef industry. "The issue with organic cattle isn't
about the quantity of supply," said Dennis Crowell, manager of the McEwen
Ranch. "The issue has been a quality of supply and we intend for this ranch
to change that." The McEwen Ranch currently has the capacity for up to
5,000 head of organic cattle and with modest additional capital investment
and increased staffing, the ranch has the grass and water capacity to
significantly increase the amount of organic cattle that can be raised on
the land. "It's time for the organic beef industry to shift the paradigm
and start to focus on quality, rather than trying to get the green stamp on
just any piece of beef," Explained Matt Grove, President of Dakota Beef
LLC. "The tremendous quality of these McEwen cattle is what makes this deal
so important to Dakota Beef," he added.

To ensure only the highest quality cattle will graze on these prime
ranch lands, the managers of the McEwen Ranch have spent the past year
working closely with the Bill Davis, owner of the Rollin' Rock Ranch and
Chairman of the Certified Angus Beef Board of Directors, who produces
performance breeders of premium certified Angus bulls and have provided the
ranch with all the bulls for its operation. The Rollin' Rock and Hinman
Angus have a combined 85 year history of selective breeding of certified
Angus cattle. "We're extremely proud to have provided the McEwen Ranch with
outstanding bulls from our seed stock for its Oregon ranch lands," said
Bill Davis. "The McEwen Ranch has taken a huge step towards controlling the
largest quantity of certified organic Angus cattle in the country," he
added. The first Angus bulls were brought to the United States from
Scotland in 1873. These hearty cattle can thrive in a wide variety of
challenging environments and are prized for producing consistently tender,
flavorful beef.

Background on The McEwen Ranch

The McEwen Ranch represents a remarkable assemblage, consisting of
numerous significant ranches within its boundaries that would be virtually
impossible to create today. The McEwen is a true heritage ranch, steeped in
the history of the Old West. It's home to several noteworthy historic
corrals, homesteads and other sites of historic importance. The ranch lands
were once hunting grounds for the Paiute, Shoshone and Bannock tribes and
was also the location of historic British Hudson's Bay Company and American
fur-trapping expeditions in the 1820's. The lands, 90 miles west of Boise,
ID, are also the site of a historic military wagon road constructed shortly
after the end of the Civil War and were at one time home to the historic
"Flying T" and "Diamond J" brands.

Today, the McEwen is one of the largest working cattle ranches in the
Pacific Northwest, comprising approximately 150,000 acres of rugged and
spectacular western landscape. Its low-valley areas (3,400 ft. elevation)
offer outstanding wintering for cattle due to mild climate. It combines the
qualities of a superior cattle ranch with a game preserve and recreational
retreat, and possesses exceptional habitat for big game, upland birds and
native fish. Ranging in elevation from 3,400 feet to 6,037 feet above sea
level, this magnificent grasslands, rugged mountains, far-reaching juniper
forests, broad valleys and spectacular canyons. The Property includes
50,217 acres of deeded land, grazing rights to approximately 100,000 acres
of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land, and extensive water and mineral
rights throughout.

Dakota Beef LLC is the leading certified organic beef company in the
country, operating its own USDA-inspected and certified organic processing
plant in Howard, South Dakota. Founded in 2000, the company only sells
certified organic beef products guaranteed to be free of antibiotics and
growth-promoting hormones. Dakota Beef cattle are meticulously raised and
well cared for, resulting in consistently flavorful and tender beef.

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