BURLEY — Gabe Brown, a pioneer of the current soil health movement, will be the keynote speaker at the Soil Health Workshop on Thursday, Feb. 8 in Burley. Brown, along with his wife Shelly, and son Paul, own and operate Brown’s Ranch, a diversified 5,000 acre farm and ranch near Bismarck, N.D. The ranch consists of several thousand acres of native perennial rangeland along with perennial pastureland and cropland. Their ranch focuses on farming and ranching in nature’s image including the regeneration of our resources

The Browns holistically integrate their grazing and no-till cropping systems, which include a wide variety of cash crops, multi-species cover crops along with all natural grass finished beef and lamb. They also raise pastured laying hens, broilers and swine. This diversity and integration has regenerated the natural resources on the ranch without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, and fungicides. The Browns are part owners of a state inspected abattoir which allows them to direct market their products. They believe that healthy soil leads to clean air, clean water, healthy plants, animals, and people. Over 2,000 people visit the Brown’s Ranch annually to see this unique operation. They have had visitors from all 50 states and 21 foreign countries.

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Gabe and Brown’s Ranch have received many forms of recognition for their work, including a Growing Green award from the Natural Resource Defense Council, an Environmental Stewardship Award from the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, and a Zero-Till Producer of the Year Award, to name a few. Brown has also been named one of the 25 most influential agricultural leaders in the United States. He spends much of his time sharing with others the importance and power of healthy, functioning ecosystems.

Besides Brown, the Feb. 8 all-day workshop will also spotlight Marlon Winger, Regional Soil Health Specialist, Shane Holt, Dairy Nutrition Consultant, and Joel Packham, County Agent. Pesticide Credits will be available. RSVP is required. For information on the Soil Health Workshop, contact Doreen at 208-878-5556 or dmcmurray6@gmail.com

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