Riding Herd: ‘Natural’ Bison/Beef Business Sees Expanding Markets

FARGO, N.D. — Dieter Pape is president and chief executive officer of two North Dakota’s biggest-scale meat businesses — one in bison, the other in beef.

Pape lives in St. Cloud, Minn., but for five years has been is president of the North American Bison Cooperative. The co-op is officially based in New Rockford, N.D.

Also, in the past three years, Pape has been founding president and chief executive officer of the North Dakota Natural Beef L.L.C., based in Fargo, N.D.

A marketer by background, Pape led the state’s signature value-added ag co-ops into a Chapter 11 bankruptcy and then out again. He set a new vision for getting into the custom slaughter business and entering the “natural” beef meat business, which seems to be succeeding despite a national economic recession.

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