Sacramento, Calif – October 2, 2018 – Sacramento, CA—
Last month, California Rangeland Trust partnered with Raley’s Family of Fine Stores and AT&T Aspire to host an educational tour for Calaveras High School Agricultural students. They visited their neighborhood Raley’s Supermarket and 205-acre Rana Ranch in Valley Springs, California to truly experience the “farm-to-fork” development.
The “Where Your Food Grows & Grazes” program provides hands-on experience in learning about nutrition, conservation, and healthy lifestyles. “This timely program positively impacts our future generations,” said Nita Vail, Rangeland Trust CEO. “It allows us to reach youth in a unique way by bringing them out onto the ranches to show them the significance of land stewardship and food production, and how it affects California communities.”
Sponsored by Raley’s and AT&T Aspire, the students started at their local Raley’s to tour the egg, meat and produce departments and saw how food is relocated to the grocery store. “When students experience a farm or ranch, it enriches the connection communities have with fresh, healthy food and local food producers,” said Chelsea Minor, Director of Public Relations and Public Affairs, Raley’s. Afterwards, students took a tour of Rana Ranch where their team demonstrated and spoke about the beef lifecycle, animal health and land conservation. “By preserving California’s rich agricultural heritage, we will create a brighter, more diverse and beautiful future for generations to come,” said Francis Schabram, ranch owner.
Rana Ranch is home to the red-legged frog, a vulnerable species found almost exclusively in California, which is where the name of the ranch is derived from. Rana means “frog” in German, the native language of Ms. Schabram. Students explored one of the several creeks that flow through the property, which runs into Calaveras River. The Lower Calaveras River runs through under-served neighborhoods in Stockton which is vital to farmers, residential and recreational water users. This tour helped enlightened students about the value of rangelands and the benefits they provide, i.e. a healthy habitat for clean water, plants and wildlife. “A huge part of high school agricultural education and Future Farmers of America (FFA) is connecting students directly to the agricultural industry and the people who are involved in it,” says Kevin Hesser, Agricultural Teacher. “The opportunity provided by the Rangeland Trust, Raley’s and AT&T to not only visit a working cattle ranch, but also see how that product gets to the grocery store was an incredibly valuable experience for everyone involved. The students were engaged and were able to learn firsthand, in the real world, some of the opportunities that are out there for them if they choose a career in agriculture.”
The California Rangeland Trust is a non-profit organization founded by a group of innovative cattlemen and cattlewomen in 1998 to conserve the open space, natural habitat and stewardship provided by California’s ranches. The California Rangeland Trust is honored to have helped permanently protect over 320,000 acres of privately-owned rangeland. The California Rangeland Trust partners with Raley’s and AT&T Aspire to host these educational tours throughout the year to provide food and agricultural education for youth. This program is dedicated to educating the future generation of ranchers and rangeland enthusiasts about the organization and ranching community at large.