North 44

One of the coolest parts about working at farmers’ markets is meeting the other vendors and with the market season in full swing, we thought what better time to highlight our North West Crossing Farmers Market neighbors from last year; North 44! North 44 is a direct-to-consumer meat business that raises grass-fed and finished lamb and beef while following regenerative and whole animal practices.  

Courtney and Ethan started North 44 in 2016 and are both first-generation farmers. Before farming, Courtney was a former chef and marketer and Ethan was an engineer. Courtney and Ethan lived in Australia before moving to Bend and had a big backyard garden with chickens and sheep that they raised with a couple of friends. Once Courtney and Ethan realized that the “9-5 didn’t feel satisfying,” they knew they wanted to begin farming full time. Courtney said, “It was totally idealistic, but I really do think you need that idealism to start in on a dream.” Right before COVID-19 hit in 2020, they went “full-time-farm” after working off-the-farm jobs and learning all the components needed to run a farm. Courtney described the journey as a “wonderful and wild ride ever since.” 

On a typical day in the life, during the peak of summer, Courtney and Ethan spend their time moving animals, cutting hay, fulfilling online orders, and attending markets. Things move at a much slower pace in the colder seasons, which they are very thankful for after the busyness of the summer. When Courtney and Ethan aren’t farming, they enjoy spending their time camping and at the river; either rafting or floating their irrigation pond. 

Courtney and Ethan’s favorite flavor of Forth is the Bourbon Smash, but they said that the Pineapple Daquiri is a close second. The two of them enjoy drinking forth anywhere on the water, after doing chores, or on their porch after a long work day on the farm! 

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