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July 7, 2017 was the beginning of evacuations, some lasting three to five weeks due to fires burning out of control.

Redl’s Home Grown Beef has be a part of the Coquitlam Farmers Market, and additional markets across the Lower Mainland for many years. Barrie and his wife Marge, along with the rest of their family have established a devout customers base. Sadly this past month, fires have taken control over parts of British Columbia, affecting many including Barrie and his family.

Physically our ranch property and our government range permits are still intact. We say this “HUMBLY” as other ranchers have not faired as well. Members of our community got together to help at the fire centres, community halls distributing foods, and other necessities.

Barrie and his family being evacuees of the devastating fires themselves, stayed back to help with efforts along with many other community members.

Many folks stayed to fight fire, help neighbours, house horses, cattle and other animals that needed a place to be safe. During this time we as ranchers were allowed to travel through check points controlled by the RCMP and military. We helped the SPCA to rescue livestock, helped evacuate cattle from burnt areas to new pastures. The fire fighters needed drivers to transport water to crews working in subdivisions cooling hotspots.

After a number of weeks aiding fire efforts along with many other community members, and countless nights spent watching tensely as a red hue filled the sky, Barrie and his family made their way back to the ranch.

We are seeing cattle in need of fall pasture, winter feed and ranchers attempting to locate them as they have vacated their normals rangelands due to the fences being burnt.

Despite the destruction, there were moments of comradery that was encouraging for the Redl family.

It was very heartwarming to see the community spirit. Some of the RCMP who came into our community from other cities across Canada were taken aback by the rural attitude concerning helping wherever needed.

So now with heavy smoke clearing and fires beginning to settle down, Redl’s Home Grown Beef has made its much anticipated return to market, continuing to develop their relationships with each and every customer, as well as provide meats from an environment that is respectful of the land and of the animal.

Old fashioned values are the foundation of our business. Treat every customer as a member of our extended family. Be truthful and up front to our customers-listen to concerns and queries. All questions are to be answered to the best of our knowledge and often can be somewhat educational.

Another important value for Redl’s Home Grown Beef is being environmentally sustainable.

Our operations are in sync with nature; the seasons and the climate. Our cattle spend most of their time contently grazing in a low stress environment.

Along with participating in farmers markets as a vendor, Barrie and his family are strong advocates for local, small scale producers.

We purchase products from small family businesses, who are involved in agriculture. We like to support family operations who put good wholesome food on the plates of their customers. They all have a story to tell from how they raise their products, and the dedications and perseverance they exhibit. Buy local, support the small producer, and eat healthy!

After a long journey of evading fires; first evacuating to the west avoiding lighting strikes; then returning home to bring back evacuated livestock as fires threatened to jump the Fraser River; to where the family ended up for about two weeks- east in Horsefly- before finally heading home, Barrie and his family has this to say.

From all of us at Redl’s Home Grown Beef, Barrie, Marge, Travis, Connie-lyn and our grandchildren; we have been overwhelmed by the emails, phone calls and cards expressing concern for our safety and well being. From customers, vendors and market staff members. We thank you all!

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