Made in Idaho: Snake River Farms

Posted at 6:48 AM, Dec 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-17 11:18:47-05

BOISE, Idaho — 'Tis the season for extravagant dinners and expensive roasts to celebrate with family.

This year stopped some traditional holiday gatherings, but Snake River Farms, which first started in American Falls and are now headquartered in Boise, are still finding a way to bring joy to your holidays and dinner plates.

Founder Robert Rebholtz, Sr. took a trip to Japan in the early '90s and saw the quality of what was being produced in Kobe. He was inspired and wanted to bring the same meat quality to the states.

Japan often imports its beef, so Snake River Farms developed a 'Wagyu beef program' hoping to find a market in Japan, which was a success.

"The original customers for Snake River Farms were in Japan. We had a lower cost of production here, and we were learning and working with our Japanese partners and customers on how to improve our quality and shipping it all back to Japan. And that was great until 2003," Executive VP of Public Relations and Strategy Jay Theiler said.

The "cow who stole Christmas," or mad cow disease, put a damper on production and shipping. Snake River Farms had to expand their market quickly, shifting focus to more local buyers.

Their products range but American Wagyu beef, a cross between American breeds and Japanese Wagyu, is their specialty.

"We call it the best of the East meets West so it's the high marbling, that beautiful fat you get from Japanese Wagyu, combined with the great beef flavor of the American breeds like Angus." Theiler said.

The holidays indeed are the best time of the year for Snake River Farms, according to the President of Ecommerce Kaitlyn Rebholtz.

"The holiday season is all about centerpieces so hams and roasts are definitely two big items," Rebholtz said.

The holidays are typically when Snake River Farms sees a big increase in sales.

"Everybody wants to have that perfect Prime Rib or the greatest meal for their families, so we really do see a big increase during the holidays and it's fun to be apart of people's big celebrations," Theiler said.

With 2020 being a year like no other, Snake River Farms has seen people getting creative when it comes to celebrating this year.

"This year has been a crazy year and filled with a lot of challenges, but we have seen a big increase in people wanting to come up with new ways to celebrate with their smaller gatherings or celebrating from afar so, sending to different family members across the country and making virtual dinners is definitely something we've been hearing about," Rebholtz said.

To check out everything available at Snake River Farms, click here.