Scott and Jackie Dickson own Takhini River Ranch which is located up the hill on the Gully road, from the scenic Takhini River. Scott and Jackie started the farm in 2006 and it has grown ever since. In 2018, Scott graduated from Old’s College with distinction as a professional meat processor. We love our farm and our animals and are happy to share our meat with you. We want to make sure that we share our journey on the farm with you as we have had to make some decisions that have affected our animal husbandry practices and we feel that it is important that our customers know our story.
In 2018 we had a hay crisis, we simply could not grow enough hay on the ranch to feed our animals. To bring in the hay would have cost us $ 15,000 per month, hay prices were through the roof. We were faced with abandoning the cattle and sending them to the meat market, these were calves we had raised here on the farm. We had to look at our options. A ray of light entered our world when we met the Kuester family from Dixon Ville, Alberta. We were looking for alternatives and Jason Kuester offered to graze our cattle on his 1250 acre ranch in Dixon Ville. Jason also breeds black Angus and he could relate to the fact that we didn’t want to sell all our cattle and get out of farming. Jason has a livestock transport business, and each fall he brings the calves home in September. At Jason’s place, the calves are free to roam the 1250 acres and then they are brought home where we let them graze in our fields after the hay has been cut and feed them a nice blend of local barley and oats just to finish and sweeten the meat. Because our calves are not here in the Yukon for half of their lives they cannot be called local under the current YG determination of what local means. We own these calves, we bred these calves and we manage them, but we cannot call them locally grown. It is our feeling that the environmental effects of moving hay to the Yukon on a monthly basis are greater than bringing the calves back home once a year.
As a local First Nation business, we are very much grounded in the Yukon, it is our home. The processing of our calves is done here on the farm and we make all of our sausages and meat pies here in our commercial kitchen. Our staff are Yukoners. With the recent movement towards locally grown and the local born and raised brand, we want to be sure, our customers know how we manage our cattle and that we cannot put this local label on our products. On our website we offer YBAR beef and pork and Fox Ridge Farm Pork, we also raise pigs and lambs who are born and raised in the Yukon.
We want to ensure that we farm with integrity and that we share our struggles and our mitigations with you. We ensure that our cattle are well taken care of, are free-range and that we do not use antibiotics or hormones on our animals. With this in mind, we feel it is important that you know how we have chosen to farm and manage our cattle and we hope you will still choose to support us as a local business.