Our Story

Butts FamilyWe are homegrown.

Our family has been farming in the Heart of California for over four generations.  Jeff and Jestine were born and raised in the Reedley – Sanger River bottom and have lived all their life on our family farms and ranches.  Jeff has been farming and ranching for over 50 years.  Following in her father’s footsteps, Jestine has become a forth generation rancher, farmer, and equestrian extraordinaire. In her short 25 years she has accomplished a lifetime of achievement in agriculture and horsemanship.

It was Jestine and her vegetarian cousin from the Bay Area that were the brains behind Riverland Farms All Natural Grass Fed Beef.  Several years ago Jestine’s cousin contacted her and explained that, after 20 plus years as a vegetarian she was beginning to “fall a part at the seams.” Her doctor had prescribed reintroducing clean red meat back into her diet.  She proposed that if Jestine would grow beef “the way grandma used to grow it” she would help her sell it in the Bay Area.  The rest is history.  The local enthusiasm and demand for our “Homegrown”, all natural, grass fed beef has been amazing.

We love that people are beginning to reconnect with where their food comes from and how it is grown.  And are becoming more vested in helping their local communities thrive.  We are truly a “Homegrown” operation.  There are just the three of us:  our daughter Jestine, her dad Jeff and mom, Valencia.

Jestine has been riding horses all of her life and successfully competing on the “A” Horse Show Circuit since she was six years old in the disciplines of Hunter/Jumpers and Three Day Eventing.  She has been hauling her own horses since she could drive, grooms them herself and more often, than not, wins her classes and Division Championships.  Most recently she has begun to train her friend’s pack mules to jump and has successfully competed at the International Mule Championship’s in Bishop, California.

Jestine joined 4-H when she turned nine, and began her Livestock Rearing and Showing career.  She started with a flock of show sheep.  Raising her own show lambs as well as providing quality lambs for her fellow 4-H team mates and lambs for harvest to local folks in the community.

She moved on to raising and showing beef cattle in high school.  Active in the Future Farmers of America, she served as President of her Sanger Chapter and was awarded the highest degree possible in FFA; The American Farmer Degree.

After graduating from Sanger High School in 2008, Jestine continued her agricultural education at Reedley College (which was co-founded by her Great-Grandfather).  She was active on the College Cattle Show Team and grew her own show string heard. These cattle became the foundation heard stock for our grass fed beef program.

Jestine works full time (when not riding horses) on the family farm and Ranches along side her dad Jeff, caring for our cattle and horses, discing, mowing, building fence, wielding and operating the backhoe when needed.  She is a fantastic representation of “Women in Agriculture.”

If Jestine is the heart of our grass fed beef program, Jeff, is the soul.  A third generation farmer in the Reedley-Sanger area he understands the trials and tribulations of being a family owned farmer/rancher in Central California.  He also understands the hard work, dedication and sacrifice required to earn success in this field, as well as the rewards of a job well done.

Jeff is a farmer ahead of his time. He has been working with biologicals and their application in agriculture long before anyone else was even thinking about how to “grow green”.  In addition to farming his runs a successful biological manufacturing company called Terra Vita Technologies.

Valencia’s roots also run deep in agriculture.  Over 50 years ago, her mother was concerned about the growing number of people who were disconnecting from their food source.  Even back then she began hosting school field trips to their family farm, educating children on where eggs, meat and milk came from.   Val was involved in 4-H and FFA, majored in Ag Business at Chico State and put her roots down in Central California, where she has been in Business Banking for almost two decades.  Val enjoys the rural life that being married to a third Generation Farmer/Rancher provides and is delighted to be part of a “Home Grown” family farming operation that helps folks in the local communities connect with their food source in a BIG way. Her mother was right – people need to understand how and where their food is grown!  For Val, our grass fed beef business has brought the message full circle.

Find out why we love our beef, and your family will too!

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