2022 Ben Campbell – Black Diamond, Alberta

OYF Alberta is incredibly proud to present Ben Campbell and Tullichewan Ranch (pronounced tell-a-HUE-an). Ben and wife Stephanie own the ranch which sits in the convergence of four out of the five main ecological zones in Alberta. A third generation farmer deeply rooted in sustainable and ethical agriculture, for Ben ranching is not just a business, it’s a way of life. With tremendous respect and deep connection for the land on which they raise their family and animals, Ben continues to take steps to protect and maintain the diversity of this precious resource.

When Ben first started out only eight short years ago he owned 4  heads of cattle. Last year the ranch ran 300 head of yearlings, plus a direct market business that produces beef, pork and eggs. Ben is a Third/First Generation farmer. He began his professional career as an engineer in 2010, and has since transformed the family lifestyle ranch to a cleaned up, modern, financially motivated business, 100% owned and operated by he and his wife Stephanie.

Tullichewan Ranch has a direct market business as well as a commodity cattle business. The commodity cattle switched from cow calf winter calving and continuous grazing, to a buy/sell seasonal business with daily cattle moves and a focus on grazing and financial management.  They have expanded into 5 different profit centres to build a broad economic foundation. By doing so they have become the only traditional family farm in the area. Ben defines a traditional family farm as “one where at least one person is a full time farmer, the owner of the farm is the day to day decision maker on the farm and the farm produces a mainstream agricultural commodity, not a small scale specialty product”.

One of the main goals of the ranch is environmental sustainability. The cattle are a tool used to manage the ranch ecosystem and support the foundation of their grazing business model. The cattle serve the needs of the grass and soil, not the other way around.

Ben and Stephanie developed  two new wetlands on the ranch, making it home to the largest protected wetland in the area. They use wildlife-friendly fences around the farm, and put up birdhouses for species at risk, like the American Kestrel. They allow badgers to live on the farm (and raise families there) which creates habitat for other species and balances the gopher population. They don’t have farm cats… but the ranch is home to many farm skunks, weasels, foxes, and badgers in order to maintain balance and harmony in nature.

To learn more about Tullichewan Ranch visit https://grazedright.com

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