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Sustainable Ranching

Sustainable ranching is about protecting the soil and land while using cattle as a tool to manage natural resources. It also means employing the practice of Managed Intensive Grazing (MIG).

So, how does Lil’ Ponderosa Beef and Abattoir Services measure up against sustainability objectives? To begin let us use guidelines established by an International Roundtable for Sustainable Beef. A set of indicators were developed for scoring production and processing performance of ranchers and processors. Five areas were identified as important subjects by which one might measure a participant’s commitment and practices regarding … sustainability.

How Lil’ Ponderosa Enterprises compares to the international objectives for each of the five areas.

 International ObjectivesLil' Ponderosa Performance
Natural Resources

  • Ensuring soil health

  • Protecting and providing clean water sources

  • Managing Wild Life Habitat

  • Cultivating and planting to ensure plant diversity (poly-culture)

Lil' Ponderosa Beef has received numerous awards for Conservation and Stewardship:

  • 2001- PA Forage and Grassland Council

  • 2003 - PA Cattlemen's Association

  • 2006 - National Cattlemen's Beef Assoc. – Denver

  • 2011 - Cumberland County, PA Farmer of the Year

People and Community

  • Ensuring a safe working environment

  • Commitment to local community

  • Practicing good citizenship (Good neighbors)

  • Contributing to economic development

Lil Ponderosa Abattoir and Butcher Shoppe has:

  • Installed safer equipment and trained employees

  • Contributed to various organizations in the area

  • Become a local purveyor of "REAL FOOD!"

  • Provided a new market for local farmer's production

  • Joined as a member of the Chamber of Commerce

Animal Health and Welfare

  • Providing appropriate feedstuffs

  • Providing sufficient nutrition

  • Providing clean drinking water

  • Minimizing animal stress and pain Humane Treatment)

Lil' Ponderosa Beef:

  • Is predominantly a grass based farming operation

  • Pipes Water – Animals are fenced out of streams

  • Cattle are never fed grain during their lifetime

  • Cattle are never inoculated nor fed antibiotics

  • Cattle graze in picturesque natural settings

Food Production & Processing

  • Ensuring food safety

  • Practicing "Beef Quality Assurance" dictates

  • Training and implementing "Best Practices" management

Lil' Ponderosa Beef (LPB) and Abattoir:

  • Sell only USDA - Food Safety Inspected products

  • The LPB cattle are "Certified Naturally Grown"

  • Employees are HACCP trained and SOPs are in place

  • Farm follows "Beef Quality Assurance" program

Engaged in and Pursuing Innovation and Efficiency

  • Recycling

  • Energy conservation

  • Following Natural and Organic practices


Lil' Ponderosa Enterprises is:

  • A family owned business – both farm and the abattoir

  • Using solar energy to convert grass into protein

  • Using natural ingredients & processing methods

  • Conserving natural resources and practicing sustainability guidelines

  • Seeking new and better ways. "Best Practices"