This Florida cattle rancher CARES for future generations through his commitment to sustainable management
Florida Farm Bureau’s ‘CARES’ program publicly recognizes farmers and ranchers in The Sunshine State who go above and beyond to protect the state’s natural resources. We take you to Crooked Creek Farm in Altha, Florida, one of the operations recognized for its use of sustainable management practices.
Beaver Yoder was born and raised in Alfa, Florida, learning how to raise dairy cattle and grow a variety of crops from his farther and grandfather.
Yoder and his wife, Michelle, purchased Crooked Creek Ranch after they married. Over the years, they have grown the business from a row crop farm to what is now a full-scale cattle operation — and, at the same time, raised up four daughters there on the property, and in the family business.
“We’ve had a lot of different enterprises in our operation here.,” Yoder said. “We’ve grown a lot of crops, but the absolute best crop we ever grew was our four daughters, and so it’s been fun to have them be a part of what we do from birth to where they are and they’ve all been involved in the operation in every aspect.”
Today, he and his family are sustainably raising beef cattle as a stocker and backgrounding operation. The family is one of the 800-plus farmers and ranchers who have been recognized by the Florida Farm Bureau for their efforts in protecting the state for the next generation.
“When we talk about our agriculture operations, there’s a three-pronged triangle that has to be forefront to what we do,” Yoder explained. “You have the societal benefits that we provide as an agricultural operation, you have your environmental benefits, and then, an equal balance, because when one’s out of balance there’s no sustainability to it.”
Mr. Yoder makes environmental stewardship a priority on their land, always thinking about the next generation to use it.
“One of the things that’s been fun for me is that our agricultural operations really focus on BMPS, which is our best management practice that we want to implement,” he said. “Not because we’re mandated to, but because we want to. This is our version of environmental stewardship, and we should be taking care of our lands in this manner.”