Joe Morris, with his wife Julie, has owned and operated Morris Grassfed Beef since 1991 when Joe took over the management of his grandparent’s 200-acre ranch near San Juan Bautista, just south of San Jose, California. Today, they lease an additional 7,000 acres and run 250 cows to serve their grassfed beef direct marketing business, as well as approximately 1,800 stockers. Joe comes from a lineage of ranchers stretching back five generations, the most recent of which was his grandfather who ranched into the 1980s. He is deeply influenced by the vaquero tradition that grew out of two complimentary influences — the indigenous skills of Native North Americans in using animals to take care of the land and the horsemanship of the Spanish settlers in California. The tradition emphasizes caring equally for the well being of the land, the animals and the people, recognizing their interdependence and its potential to produce beauty. Today’s episode has been sponsored by Hearst Ranch.

“We first have to move from bare soil and annual grasses to coverage soil and perennial grasses. And that’s when we can start seeing this real boost in productivity, and that productivity feeds a lot of diverse life.” [16:35] —Joe Morris on Greenhorn Radio