Modern Bison Industry
The modern commercial bison industry began in the 1960’s, but did not gain significant momentum until the late 1980’s. In the 20 years that followed, a sudden introduction of new ranchers to the industry, a demand for only the high end cuts of meat, and significant droughts through much of the heartland all contributed to significant ups and downs in the market. However, over the last decade the market has remained stable and shown steady signs of improvement. According to the National Bison Association, in the last six years the industry has consistently shown double-digit growth on a consumer driven basis.
Today the bison population stands at an estimated 450,000 animals in the United States and Canada. Many of roam in public parks, but the vast majority of them are raised by private ranchers. Demand for bison meat has created opportunities for farmers in all 50 states to make a living selling either the animals, or the healthy meat they offer. In 2014, there were an estimated 60,000 bison slaughtered under federal and state inspection. To help with perspective, there are approximately 90,000 cattle slaughtered under inspection per day in the United States.
The North American Bison has an amazing story. From herd sizes so large you can barely imagine them, to near extinction. Now, over 100 years later, they are again poised to become the source of a healthy and delicious meat for generations of Americans to come. Red Frazier Bison, along with the many other ranchers we have come to know, are proud and honored to be caring for such an intelligent, remarkable, and majestic creature.