Farm: Rippley Family Farms
Location: Waumandee, WI
Farm Bureau: Buffalo
Ed Rippley raises chickens on his family farm in the heart of the driftless region in Buffalo County. At Rippley Family Farms, sustainability means maintaining the farm for the third generation and setting it up for success in the future to pass it on to the next generation.
The Rippley Family Farm was originally home to a herd of dairy cows. The farm transitioned to raising chickens 18 years ago. Raising poultry keeps the family involved in production agriculture while allowing more flexibility for other chores and activities.
Ed knows that to raise a successful, sustainable flock, bird health and barn cleanliness are of utmost importance. Daily flock maintenance tasks include walking the flock and maintaining the automated equipment used to feed and water the birds.
As a contract grower for Pilgrim Pride, Ed raises seven flocks a year with up to 50,000 birds at a time. Pilgrim Pride holds their growers accountable to maintain their quality standards with regular audits and flock health checks.
The Rippley’s have been involved in the Waumandee Watershed Group since the mid-90s. They have done various projects with the group including stream bank restoration, strip cropping and erosion control.
Ed’s goal is to continue doing no-till to prevent runoff and erosion on the hills of the driftless region. He keeps the hills green and growing with grasses and hay to hold the soil in place and provide feed for his animals.