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He Turns Elk Antlers Into Medicine
For Gary Queen, raising elk is a business that also has a personal meaning for him.
    "Their antlers have healing powers to cure what ails us," says Queen, who harvests the antlers from about 50 bull elk each year and turns them into nutritional supplements that he's convinced have the power to heal.
    Rose Lake Elk Ranch, near Cataldo, Idaho, is home to about 140 elk.
    The antlers are harvested at the prime growth stage, in late spring, when they are large and appear to have a velvet coating.
    "At this stage the antlers are said to be most potent. When harvested later, you may get more weight, but you lose the nutrients and the life-pumping blood that is so beneficial. The antler is a growing organism when harvested. That's what makes it so accessible to the body," says Queen.
    Once plagued with arthritis, Queen has found that regular use of an elk antler supplement has taken away his pain and given him renewed stamina. It has made him a firm believer in the product.
    He started making his own natural supplement on the ranch. "I now have a better mark-up cost where other people can sell my line of natural supplements and they and I can both make money," he notes.
    Queen, who's been making his own line of supplements for five years, likes the quality and cost control of having his own freeze-dryer. He freeze-dries other elk ranchers' antlers and sells the product under his label, Rose Lake Elk Velvet Antler.
    After harvesting, the antlers are immediately flash frozen at 0? Fahrenheit. Then it's put in the freeze dryer for four to five weeks. The velvet skin is stripped off the antler, which is kind of a cross between cartilage and bone marrow. Then it's pulverized to produce a powder. From there, Queen sends a sample off for testing at a laboratory to check for bacteria and mold spores and anything else that would be a detriment to humans. After passing the test the product is sent off to be encapsulated.
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Rose Lake Elk Ranch 12205 S. Hwy. 3, Cataldo, S. Dak. 83810 (ph 877 855-6437 or 208 682-2258; email: info@va2000.net; website: va2000.net).

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2004 - Volume #28, Issue #5