Spray Creek Ranch
Spray Creek Ranch is a 260 acre (100 hectare) farm in the rain shadow of British Columbia’s Coast Mountains in the Northern St’at’imc Territory, 15 km south of Lillooet. This is an area of incredible natural diversity, with lush red cedar and cottonwood growing only a few hundred metres from shrivelled prickly pear cactus and sagebrush. The farm is bordered by the mighty Fraser River on the east, and on the west we are flanked by a dramatic and rugged cliff and endless forested mountains. Our irrigation water is gravity-fed from creeks that cascade down from the mountains above and rush past the homestead and orchard. We have around 125 acres under irrigation, including open perennial pastures, orchards, silvopasture and homestead gardens. The remaining land includes mostly native forest and protected riparian areas.
The history of this land extends back into time immemorial as a seasonal gathering place for the St’at’imc people. The old homestead cabin and the original irrigation ditches date back to the late 1800s, and the land was deeded in in 1897. Some of the graves in the farm cemetery date back nearly that far as well, as do some of the old timer’s stories. In more recent times, the farm has been primarily a commodity cow-calf ranch, producing winter feed like hay or corn silage while the cattle spent the summer on range in the mountains. The calves were sold at auction in the fall, and the cycle started again.
Today, Spray Creek Ranch is a certified organic and diversified regenerative farm using ecological principles to produce wholesome, delicious pastured meats. We raise certified organic beef cattle, pigs, meat chickens, turkeys and laying hens on pasture as part of an integrated and regenerative agroecological system. We also operate a growing on-farm abattoir and meat shop, and are moving toward slaughtering all our livestock on the farm and providing slaughter and cut & wrap services to other farms in our region.
Can we build healthy soils, protect critical habitat, sequester atmospheric carbon, eliminate toxic inputs, prioritize animal welfare, and still enjoy delicious healthy meats? We think so!