Meet Mike and Kristina Fay of KM Ranch.
Mike and Kristine Fay purchased their ranch in 2019 and have since been building their cow herd. Currently they run mainly Angus cattle with the longterm goal of running Angus mother cows and Hereford bulls. Their focus is to build hardy animals who can withstand the sometimes extreme climate in northern British Columbia.Mike brings over 20 years experience in the agriculture industry. He grew up in Ontario and spent most of his childhood summers putting up hay on his Grandpa's farm. He came to BC at the young age of 18 with the dream of being a cowboy. He has since lived up to that dream and before purchasing KM Ranch, has worked on/managed several large outfits in BC.Kristina grew up in 150 Mile House, BC with a few horses in the backyard. She spent several years in the hunter/jumper show ring but drifted away from horses while completing her undergraduate degree. It was not until meeting Mike that Kristina became involved in the ranching industry.
Sustainability on our ranch means utilizing agricultural practices which are efficient, safe and prioritize a healthy environment. We do not use pesticides or insecticides on our operation and are actively working to reduce the reliance of our hay producing lands on chemical fertilizers.One of the ways we are doing this is by planting cover crops. 2022 was the first year that we implemented cover cropping, and we plan to cover off a new area each year. We plant our cover crops via a 'no till' method which allows for very little soil disruption. Another way we are working towards this is by putting in place a strict rotational grazing program where we place livestock on a smaller grazing area for a short duration of time and move them to a new area after 24 hours. We have noticed an immense improvement in our grassland health, even though we have only practiced this for a short period of time.
We are open and honest with our consumers about our practices and encourage them to visit our ranch to learn more.
Why we became a certified sustainable ranch
We are a CRSB Certified operation through the Verified Beef Production Plus program. We decided to become certified because the values of the CRSB align with ours, and the methods we practice on our ranch. We also believe that since approx. 2% of the Canadian population is in the ranching industry, it is important to be transparent with the public about where their food comes from and how it is raised. We also want to encourage the younger generation to get into this industry and leave sustainable land behind for them to one day take over.
Our Sustainable Practices
Some of our initiatives that demonstrate sustainability:
- We have a strict record keeping system the allows us to keep track of our animals, and their health needs, so there is never any question when it comes to a record related issue.
- We handle our cattle on horseback and implement a low stress method. Cattle who are stressed are not healthy or happy, and this goes against our values.
- We prioritize healthy soil and a healthy ecosystem; we utilize no till farming methods so that there is minimal disturbance to the soil.
- We do not rely on insecticides or pesticides to control undesirable parasites or invasive weeds on our operation; we instead ask the question, 'what are we doing to provide an accommodating climate for these species?'
- We sell home raised beef and lamb; we are open and honest with our consumers about our practices and encourage them to visit our ranch to learn more.
What we want you to know...
We want consumers to know that it is SO important to get to know and support, you're local ranchers and farmers. The people in this industry pour their heart and soul into their operations. Most, if ever forced to choose, would feed and care for their animals and land before they fed and cared for themselves.