“If it doesn’t grow in the dirt, it doesn’t
go into our feed.” This is a favourite saying of one
veteran elk ranchers, Frank McAllister of Kitscoty. With over
30 years of industry experience, Alberta’s elk ranchers
know what’s best for their animals. They are raised
on spacious farms and given plenty of room
to roam; they graze naturally and their diet is free of hormones
and steroids; and they eat the grasses and plants they prefer.
When the quality and quantity of grazing drops in winter,
ranchers will supplement feed with hay and other harvested
crops. Other supplemental mineral feeds for ranched elk have
always been free of animal by-products. The Canadian Food
Inspection Agency continues to regulate high standards for
elk feed even as
it continues its improvements to other livestock feeds.
Alberta Ranched Elk is:
- high in protein, iron and B vitamins
- leaner than beef
- leaner than pork tenderloin or chicken breast (with
- raised on natural feed – no antibiotics, growth
stimulants, hormones or steroids
For a nutritional comparison to other meets see the nutrition
In addition to offering superior nutritional benefits, Alberta
Ranched Elk is the safest meat on the market today. All elk
processed in Alberta undergo mandatory and rigorous testing
before processing to ensure
that only healthy animals enter the human food chain.
- Elk ranching is a government-regulated industry controlled
under the Livestock Industry
- The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regularly
inspects elk herds and tests for illnesses
such as tuberculosis and brucellosis.
- To ensure their elk are free from chronic wasting disease
(CWD), Alberta ranchers comply with
the Alberta government’s Mandatory CWD Surveillance
- Only one case of CWD was found in Alberta prior to 2002.
Since 2002, 20,679 ranched elk have
been tested and no cases of CWD have been found.
- There is no evidence to suggest CWD can affect humans.
Alberta’s elk ranchers are committed to humane treatment
practices because they know it’s in the best interests
of their animals and their industry. Health Canada, the Canadian
Food Inspection Agency, and the Alberta government have set
strict regulations for the practice of elk ranching. Elk are
raised on spacious farms with plenty of room to roam. These
free-range environments promote healthy and normal development.
There’s no such thing as a “factory farm”
in the elk industry!
- Elk graze naturally, and their diet is free of growth
stimulants, hormones, and antibiotics. “If it doesn’t
grow in the dirt, it doesn’t go into our feed.”
- Elk ranchers also adhere to the highest standards in
Canadian agriculture today set out by provincial and federal
governments. Alberta’s elk ranching industry is governed
by the Livestock Industry Diversification Act. As well,
the federal Elk and Deer Farming Guide outlines very specific
animal husbandry guidelines.