When you’re a cattle rancher, you are captain of your domain. You’re also captain of cow patties, horse apples, broken down sheds, busted fences and dead tractors. As well, there may be people you’ve hired to work on your ranch, and they rely on you to pay their wages and provide a safe working environment. Your cows’ meat is distributed all over the country and it’s your reputation at stake. E-coli contamination? Mad Cow disease? Never—not you.
Whether you’re selling your meat to local butchers in your county or to the McDonald’s national conglomerate, your power lies in being able to provide for your cows, your workers, your families and, finally, the consumers. You’re feeding people. (Okay, well not the vegetarians or vegans—that part of the population that may not eat meat, but likes to purchase and order food that looks like meat. Boca Burger anyone? Tofu Pup?)