EVELYN AND MIKE LAFORTUNE HAVE BEEN OPERATING PEI’S ONLY CERTIFIED ORGANIC BEEF RANCH SINCE 2015.
Following a holistic management approach, Dexter Cattle Company raises their cattle without the use of antibiotics, pesticides, or herbicides, instead focusing on rotational grazing to sustain their cattle and the land.
Through rotational grazing and keeping the cattle divided between separate herds, the cattle are moved to different size pastures every few days to feed on grass and hay, and remain outdoors 365 days a year. The time span for each rotation is about 60 days.
The grasses the cattle eat include white clover grass, timothy, orchard grass, hairy vetch, brome, red clover, alfalfa and a few others. They also graze on fescue, a fine grass with narrow deep green blades used for grazing in the cooler, shaded areas.
The Dexter Ranch also has a 25-foot buffer zone to further protect the herd.
In addition, the Lafortunes produce their own hay in round and square bales, plus they buy additional certified organic hay from another local farmer.
This sustainable farming practice improves the topsoil by retaining moisture, utilizes the natural compost produced by the cattle, and encourages growth of different plant species.
This in turn extends the grazing season, improving soil, plant, and animal health.
"As more and more people hear about Regenerative Agriculture, that’s what we are doing here by having our animals live outside."