Stockgrowers Announce Stewardship Nominations Open
The Montana Stockgrowers Association announces the 2024 nominations for the Montana Environmental Stewardship Award are open. Each year, MSGA honors a Montana ranch that exemplifies environmental stewardship and demonstrates a commitment toward improved sustainability within the beef industry. While the program highlights industry stewardship, it also provides cattlemen with examples and ideas which may be useful on their own ranching operations.
“Ranchers are one of the original conservationists. This award isn’t just a pat on the back, it’s about sharing the ranchers’ story and role when it comes to environmental stewardship. The land is our livelihood, and it is important that we share that message with customers and encourage other ranchers to do the same.” said John Grande, MSGA president.
Ranchers, as individuals and as an industry, are actively working to protect and improve the environment because they know environmental stewardship is a crucial component to a successful ranching operation. Environmental Stewardship Award winners are prime examples of how environmental management benefits both the rancher’s bottom line and the resources in their care.
The award nomination process is an opportunity for county conservation districts, water districts, local livestock associations, wildlife organizations or other local and state agencies focused on conservation and multiple land use to recognize partnerships with ranchers who help them accomplish mutual goals. Any Montana Stockgrowers Association member who is working to leave the land better for the next generation would be an ideal candidate.
Winners of the Environmental Stewardship Award host a tour on their ranch, known as the Raising the Steaks Ranch Tour coordinated by the Montana Stockgrowers Foundation, the year after they are announced. This year’s tour will be held at the Mannix Brothers Ranch in Helmville.
“The Raising the Steaks Ranch Tour is focused on reaching out to our customers and consumers so we can share what we do on our ranches and how we manage our resources to provide safe, healthy, and sustainable food.” said Lon Reukauf, Raising the Steaks Tour committee chair.
Nominations for the Environmental Stewardship Award can be submitted at https://mtbeef.org/esap/ before July 15, 2023. The winning ranch will then have the assistance of a professional writer and photographer to capture their ranch’s story – their family’s legacy of caring for the land and livestock – to represent Montana in the regional Environmental Stewardship Award Program. The winner will be recognized at the Montana Stockgrowers MidYear Meeting in June 2024.