What is the Sustainable Harvest Alliance

The main goal of SHA is to supply a means by which small bison producers, especially on the reservations of western South Dakota, can bring their grass-fed bison to market in a humane, environmentally friendly, and culturally acceptable way.

Many bison producers, both Native and Non-Native, struggle with inhumanity of modern-day slaughterhouses. Such plants, with their confinement and crowding pens, kill floors, and perpetual aura of death are not only a terrifying experience for the wild bison that we owe so much too, but also an affront to a way of life that honors the relationship among all animals. Modern-day slaughterhouses and the sanitation rules that necessarily accompany them have conspired to separate the animas from the people. SHA aspires to reinstate the spiritual connection between The People and The Bison by bringing the harvest process back to the land. In the process of achieving that objective, bonds of spirituality and health can be reestablished.

But there is a second and also important goal

We live in a society where the bottom line can not be ignored. Bringing the harvest of bison back to the land will allow the small producer, with little or no access to capital, to bring his desirable product to a wide market of meat purveyors and consumers. Presently, a producer with a small herd has little or no options when it comes to converting his animals into cash. There is little competition when it comes to buying or selling live bison. In most cases producers must take the price that is offered to him. To quote one producer, “You simply can not sell live bison. The money is in carcasses” SHA’s objective is to give small producers a chance to escape the competition-starved market of live bison that now prays on them and create access to the growing and vibrant market of healthy, sustainable red meat.