Skip to main content

Brandon Fischer: "We never would have started our business without 4-H."

Did you see this AgriNews article about a Grove City business that got started through a 4-H project? I was curious to learn more about the family that owns North Grove Charolais, so I gave Brandon Fischer a call. Here’s the story behind the story:

Erin Kelly-Collins: How did your family get involved with 4-H?

Brandon Fischer: My mom was raised on a dairy farm in Meeker County and was a member of the Acton Buzzer 4-H Club. When my brother, sister and I were old enough, we became members too. I served as president of our club as a high schooler and have good memories of the community pride activities we did together. I especially enjoyed selling Toys for Tots. My grandparents still live on our family farm, which is where we raised cattle for our 4-H projects and now run our North Grove Charolais business.

EKC: I heard that North Grove Charolais was actually started as a 4-H project. Tell me a little more about how that happened.

BF: Although we raised swine when we were really young, all three of us kids were interested in beef and dairy cattle. So sometime around 1991 our parents got us a couple heifers to raise for 4-H dairy projects and two years later we started participating in the beef project. We earned annual trips to the State Fair with our Charolais projects, showing in both the 4-H and FFA shows and winning several grand championships (1996-2002). My brother Dustin and I were especially hooked on the Charolais breed and decided we wanted to continue raising them even after our 4-H years ended.

Over the past 10 years we've grown our herd to 50 head of cattle, plus calves, and have gotten very involved in embryo transfer. We've been able to raise some really strong animals and want to breed them as safely and efficiently as possible. Using embryo transfer into surrogate cows has been an effective strategy for us.

EKC: How have you been able to stay connected to 4-H in your area?

BF: We probably never would have started our business if we hadn't raised Charolais in 4-H, so we are committed to helping the next generation of youth stay involved. We serve as superintendents of the beef show at the Meeker County Fair and host seminars on animal care and showmanship for youth in the counties around our farm. Our Charolais Association donates a heifer each year to a worthy 4-H'er, which is a program we love to support. The members take turns donating the actual calf and we're looking forward to our turn in 2019. We can’t get too many Minnesota/Wisconsin youth raising Charolais in my opinion!

EKC: What advice do you have for current 4-H'ers?

BF: I encourage youth to take time to meet people and build their network while in the 4-H program. You never know where those relationships will take you. And definitely take all the opportunities you can to learn about the agriculture industry through 4-H. My 4-H experiences me my job and helped me develop my passion. 4-H is a great place to grow up!

EKC: How do you spend your time when you’re not working with North Grove Charolais?

BF: I’m a parts man at Schlauderaff Implement Company in Litchfield. I also enjoy golfing, boating and tubing, but truthfully, most of my free time is spent with our Charolais. It takes a lot of dedication to run a small business and I love doing it!


If you would like to be a Minnesota 4-H Featured Alum, please share your story using this online form. And if you'd like to nominate somebody you know please contact Erin Kelly-Collins (erinkc@umn.edu).

Erin Kelly-Collins
Alumni Coordinator
Minnesota 4-H Foundation
Print Friendly and PDF

Comments