Raising Red Angus cattle and falling in love with life on the farm came naturally for Jacob (16) and Ethan (13) Bell. As highly involved teenagers, they still find the time to manage their own herds and are devoted to making their operations better with each generation. Read the Q&A below to learn more about the Bell boys.
Q: Describe your operation.
Jacob: We live on a farm my Great-Great Grandparents bought back in 1906. Our family has always raised cattle. My Granddaddy brought the registered Red Angus cattle to West TN in 1996. My Granddaddy gave me my first calf in 2007 and I bought my first one in 2012. I currently own 19 registered cows. My family and I show cattle across the country. We have shown cattle in places such as Denver, Louisville, and Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Ethan: I have 15 registered Red Angus cows. I’m a partner with my Granddaddy and brother on our 75 head cattle farm.
Q: What have you enjoyed most about growing up on the farm?
Jacob: What I enjoy most about growing up on the farm is the sense of family instilled in me and it has given me a good work ethic. Living on the farm has taught me to be respectful, accountable, and responsible.
Ethan: I’m able to hunt all the time and the wide-open spaces.
Q: Who has been your biggest role model in pursuing your farming aspirations?
Jacob: My Dodaddy is my biggest role model. He’s 79 and still works with the cows every
day. He’s the one who got me going in the business.
Ethan: My Dodaddy because he watches me while I work hard and keeps me motivated.
Q: What are you passionate about in your business?
Jacob: Genetics! I like to always try to improve my herd so that I can sell cows people want. I enjoy showing cows to market my own genetics!
Ethan: I like the nutritional aspect of how to feed a cow and also what to feed to make a show calf better.
Q: What are some of the greatest challenges that you face as a young farmer?
Jacob: Time to get it all done! I play football at Dyersburg High School and I’m also an officer at Dyersburg FFA. AND- I still have to make good grades.
Ethan: Having the time to focus on my herd. I’m an Honor Roll student, play football and golf, shoot trap and I’m president of the 4H Chapter at Dyersburg Middle School.
Q: Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?
Jacob: I want to go to college to learn how to be a genetic engineer. I will still have my own herd and I can help other people improve theirs as well.
Ethan: I want to go college to be a doctor. Hopefully, I will still live on the farm and continue raising cows.
Q: How do you intend to leave your footprint on the beef industry in Tennessee?
Jacob and Ethan: Our goal is to have one of the best registered Red Angus herds in the state so when people come looking for good red cows, they will call us.
Q: What could the existing farmers do most to help future farmers such as yourself?
Jacob: Share their knowledge with kids my age who are trying build their own herds.
Ethan: Show us how to do it the right way.
Q: What is your favorite beef dish?
Jacob: T-Bone Steaks.
Ethan: Filet Mignon
Good Luck to the Bell Boys at the North American Jr. Red Angus Event this week in Hutchinson, Kansas!