Brad Brown, addicted to farming.

January 21, 2020

Brad Brown, addicted to farming.

#TheLand is a series telling the stories about local agriculture. It is a presentation of Peterson Farms.

By Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief

RIVERTON TOWNSHIP — Brad Brown has been a farmer all his life. He was born and raised on the family farm, located near Brye and Kistler roads. In the late ‘80s, his dad sold the farm, but that didn’t deter Brad from continuing the family business. As a teenager, he rented 20 acres of tillable land that his dad still owned, along with some other land.

Brad went to Michigan State University where he earned a degree in agriculture business management. He came back home and started a 4,000 head hog barn. In 2006 he bought the family’s original farm back and in 2010 started raising cattle there.

He has since gotten out of the hog business. He has 600 acres of tillable land, 400 of which is certified organic. The remaining 200 acres is used to feed the cattle.

“The cattle are not organic,” Brad says. “That’s a whole other process, something I have thought about, but I’m not there yet.”

The cattle are fed with non-GMO corn, which Brad raises himself. He says the cattle also are not implanted with steroids, or hormones.

“On the organic crop side, I got into that four years ago,” he says. “The biggest reason was that organic had better margins. In 2015 conventional crop prices were coming down. Crop prices, cattle prices, they go in a cycle every 10 or 11 years. Instead of riding that train, I got into organic hoping to have a better profit margin. It’s been a learning curve.”

Brad says he doesn’t see himself ever doing anything but farming.

“Farming is an addiction. It’s in your blood if you are born into it. I have had several opportunities to pursue other endeavors but I can’t get out of farming. I’m a farmer through and through and no matter what I will be farming the rest of my life.”

For more information on Brown Cattle Company beef, email or call 231-425-8910.

For information on Peterson Farms, including careers, visit

This story is copyrighted © 2020, all rights reserved by Media Group 31, LLC, PO Box 21, Scottville, MI 49454. No portion of this story or images may be reproduced in any way, including print or broadcast, without expressed written consent.

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