McCormack Family Lamb Ranch

California

Niman Ranch Lamb at the McCormack Ranch

Jeannie McCormack and Al Medvitz, from Northern California, are lamb ranchers for Niman Ranch.

How many generations in your family are ranchers?

Three.

What crops are produced on your ranch?

Wheat, barley, safflower, alfalfa hay and grapes.

What’s the history of your family’s operation?

We currently run the ranch that was originally founded in 1896 by Jeannie’s grandfather, Dan McCormack, a Scottish immigrant to New Brunswick, Canada, who finally settled around Rio Vista in 1892. My father, Wallace McCormack, ran the ranch from 1934 to 1999.

What sustainable farming practices are part of your ranch?

We grow the grain integral to our operation. In 2004, native grasses were seeded into permanent pastures in an effort to sustainably control invasive weeds.

How long have you sold lamb to Niman Ranch?

We were the first lamb producer in 1993.

How did you begin selling to Niman Ranch?

I (Jeannie) developed the first network of lamb producers by recruiting my neighbors in helping me supply Niman Ranch lamb. Through the Peace Corps, I met Niman Ranch’s first hog farmer, Paul Willis, and introduced him to the Niman Ranch family of cattle and lamb producers.

"I love to farm because every day of my life I think of my father, my grandfather and my grandmother. I imagine what they did as I go about my daily tasks. I love this land."

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