Since 2006, Belcampo Meat Company has been raising animals for consumption in Siskiyou County, and on Monday a groundbreaking ceremony on Phillipe Lane in Yreka set the stage for a new venture that is expected to bring jobs to the area and give rise to a new way for the producer to go from “pasture to plate.”
In an interview Monday, Belcampo Farm General Manager Mark Klever said that the company, which has ranches in Gazelle and Grenada, now has a part of the industrial park on the edge of Yreka where it hopes to open an animal harvest/slaughter facility in the summer of 2012.
“We want our products to be fully traceable and we want to be fully accountable for the quality of those products,” Klever said.
Part of that effort, he said, is to make sure that the animals’ histories are known and that they are raised humanely and organically, which includes ownership of the means of slaughter.
The multiple species raised by the ranches include beef cattle, swine, geese, goats, lamb, quail and more, all which the company will be able to accommodate at the planned facility.
According to Klever, beyond the production of distinct local meats, the venture is expected to create 10-15 jobs at the facility to complement the approximately 13 currently employed on the two ranches.
While much of the market is aimed at out-of-county consumers, Klever explained that part of the vision does include a mode of sale within the county for locals who want local meats. When asked, he added that while no details have been fully realized, there may be an option in the future for accommodating other local meat producers at the slaughter facility.
Klever, who noted that he has a long background in conventional farming, said of the Belcampo experience that personally, he wants to do something to give his children “the opportunity to see that we can be creative and responsible in how we produce the products we consume.”