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Visit the Smokey Hill Bison Farm in Assaria, Kansas, where free ranging Bison are grown and farmed.
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Speaker: Here in Assaria, a Kansas farm girl is in pursuit of her American dream.
Linda Hubalek: I'm a farm kid. I just grew up down the road. My husband and I had met at Kay State. He’s an engineer, so lived in California and Colorado, different places. And we moved back home here basically. We bought this farm in 1995 and it was a wheat field. I need to make a living on 80 acres of wheat, you don’t these years. So we changed it into a managed intensive raising pasture and that’s why you see the central alley way and the five-acre products, we had stacker stirs, the first few years, where we buy them at the sell and buy in the spring, sell them in the fall, we may or may not make money out of it. So we looked into another niche market that would work on our land situation here and something that would be unusual.
And so we’re living in Denver at the time and the National Restaurant Stock Show has a Bison show in conference every year. So we went to it a few years and decide to look into it. And there's also a Kansas Buffalo Association, and so we started going to meetings just to meet other branches, just to talk to them about how do you handle buffalo, what's the problems, what's the pros and cons. And so we bought our first animals in ’99 where we got 40 young bulls like we have over there, just to try them out. We really enjoyed them, so by June, we got our first 15 acres. And so since 1999 we’ve had them.
So we kind of started with the idea of raising the animals, selling the cows. But we got into meat, and started our website, bisonfarm.com, and we started selling meat online, most to the coast to the coast, because they're looking for a clean meat source, they wanted to know the farmer that’s raising their food. And we built this new building four years ago and added space for ecotourism.
So I'm kind of becoming an ambassador for Kansas Agriculture in a little different way, agriculture and—but we’re raising buffalo, instead of wheat on this 80-acres.