Here's how we're making it happen

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Mission

  • As Lakota we believe we are all related and it is our duty to create a better world for future generations. 
    • At REDCO we do this by developing amazing leaders who run great organizations.
      • The core business of the Wolakota Regenerative Buffalo Range is to raise and harvest buffalo using culturally appropriate, humane, and ecologically regenerative practices while restoring our relationship to the land and promoting economic, food, and tribal sovereignty.

Solution

REDCO has a 15-year lease for a 28,000-acre property of grasslands belonging to the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. We are transforming the property into a buffalo range capable of sustaining a herd of over 1,500 animals. Beginning in spring 2020, we will fence the property in phases, which will allow us to receive our first buffalo in Fall 2020 and build the herd to full capacity over five years.   

Once fully stocked, we will wholesale animals to value-aligned buyers. Over time additional sources of income will be explored and developed, which may include a processing plant, retailing tribally-branded buffalo products, and expanding options for cultural and eco-tourism. 

Company and Team

Rosebud Farm Company (RFC), an agricultural business subsidiary of REDCO, will manage the Wolakota Regenerative Buffalo Range.  During spring and summer 2020, we will hire a Range Manager and Range Assistant, both of whom will be full-time employees with benefits (job descriptions are posted below). We have also budgeted for part-time seasonal help. REDCO's executive team will remain involved in strategic decision making for the duration of the project. Additionally, our technical assistance partners will continue to share valuable industry knowledge and connect us with their established networks.

Range and Herd Management Plans

We have drafted a regenerative Range Management Plan for 2020-21 and will continue to enhance our plan as more details become available about our bison acquisition timeline. A rapid assessment showed that cattle overgrazed pastures in the past, so we have identified several ecological and social benchmarks that will be monitored throughout the project.

Additionally, our Herd Management Plan targets a five-year build up to a capacity of over 1,500 buffalo and specifies a target makeup of our herd. This plan has been validated by some of the most experienced producers in the buffalo business.

Financing

Beyond five years, when the Wolakota Range is fully stocked, the financial outlook for the project is bright with a projected annual operating profit that makes the venture self-sufficient. However, revenue will not be generated during the early stages of the endeavor and significant upfront capital investment is required. Based on a feasibility assessment and industry research, the project will cost approximately $3.4 million over the first five years. We are off to a promising start and continue to actively seek and apply for grants, as well as explore social impact investing opportunities. Please contact us for more information!

Business Plan

We have a comprehensive 15-year business plan that has been reviewed and validated by several industry partners.