“Your forage programs are your bases for your entire cattle operation. The cattle will have to eat in good times and in bad times.”
“It’s not logical or profitable to think one can buy hay and feed from August until March.”
Bill Thomas sees himself as a grass farmer that produces beef as a by-product of harvesting the grass.
“My philosophy has been that the more I can establish forage per square yard or per acre, theoretically that should convert to more pounds of beef which is very sellable in the marketplace. So hopefully we can have a larger return on our value of our land and our livestock on a per acre basis by increasing our forage production.”
Thomas decided years ago that he’d best plan on having some drought years.
“A severe drought situation, I don’t know what we can do, it’s just a train wreck, but if it’s a moderate drought, selecting some improved grasses for your pasture you can have a little edge. That gives you a little more time through a drought situation and hope that the weather pattern will improve.”
Ranchers like farmers gamble constantly with Mother Nature. I’m Joe Brown, tracing the journey our food makes from the farm to our tables, From the Ground Up.