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RBC — A local sheep rancher and Blanco Ranger District livestock permit-holder has recently supplied the natural grocer chain, Whole Foods.
Theos Swallow Fork Ranch will provide 415 locally-grown lambs.
In order to qualify, the lambs were certified “natural,” assuring that they were raised on only “mother’s milk” and grass. The lambs summer on pastures located within grazing allotments on the White River National Forest.
Theos Swallow Fork Ranch was required to complete a lengthy documentation process, certifying that lambs were raised “natural” and that strict guidelines for animal husbandry procedures were followed. A representative from Whole Foods visited the domestic sheep grazing allotment on the National Forest as well as the base ranch and ranching operation. The representative determined that natural forage guidelines and animal husbandry procedures met the guidelines for Colorado “natural” lamb production.
The locally grown lambs will end up at 31 different retail Whole Foods stores in several different states. According to Theos Swallow Fork Ranch, the lambs are already on shelves in the retail grocery stores.
The “Whole Foods Colorado Natural” is a spinoff of the “Colorado Proud Program” sponsored by the Colorado Department of Agriculture.