NDNB will contract for 2,000 -3,000 cattle

US - North Dakota Natural Beef LLC plans to begin contracting with livestock producers in February 2007 for delivery of natural beef cattle raised at North Dakota ranches.
calendar icon 8 January 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
Dieter Pape, CEO of North Dakota Natural Beef, said initially the company will be utilizing all North Dakota cattle, but if the numbers aren't there, it will look to cattle from surrounding states, particularly South Dakota.

“Our preference is for North Dakota cattle. The North Dakota State Legislature, and NDSU are supporting the venture - so that is why we will be talking to North Dakota ranchers first,” said Pape.

Initially, contracts for 2,000 to 3,000 head will go out but by the fifth year, 2011, the contracts will probably be for 25,000 head, Pape said.

NDNB has a “very interesting relationship with NDSU,” Pape said. A for-profit company is collaborating with a land-grant university for educational interests. It's an idea that is catching on throughout the country - business and education working for mutual goals, he added.

In this case, N.D. Natural Beef will have a second facility in Fargo so students at NDSU can learn about beef processing and beef research.

“The engineer drawings will be done by the end of the week for that facility. We expect to be in there in June,” Pape said.

The North American Bison Cooperative will be the main facility for processing and marketing the beef, as well as for bison, at New Rockford.

Several ranchers said privately they did not think they could be involved with N.D. Natural Beef, even though the venture seems promising. They said the initial investment of $25,000 was too much for small producers.

Pape said that the $25,000 investment is true only for larger, qualified investors. There will be contracts out for non-qualified investors as well, which would include those who make less than $200,000 a year. Those producers can get in with “a small investment, basically any amount,” said Pape.

NDSU is currently talking to feedlots that have natural cattle and conducting a survey. That study is 90 percent complete, according to said Pape.

Source: Livestock Roundup
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