Sunshine Foods Market

1115 Main St  St Helena, CA  94574

Open 7:30am to 8:30pm  - 7 days per week 

Meat & Seafood News

Country NaturalOur Product Is More Than Beef

"'s the smell of sage after a summer thunderstorm, the cool shade of a Ponderosa Pine forest.  It's 80 year old weathered hands saddling a horse in the Blue Mountains.  The future of a 6 year old in a one room school on the High Desert.  It's  trout in a beaver built pond, haystacks on an Aspen framed meadow.  It's the hardy quail running to join the cattle for a meal, the welcome ring of a dinner bell at dusk."  ~Doc Hatfield & Becky Hatfield Hyde


Back in 1976, ranchers Doc and Connie Hatfield knew there had to be a better way to deliver the naturally-raised beef products that consumers wanted, and for ranchers to remain economically and environmentally sustainable.

“We looked all over the West to find a place where people, cattle, land and dollars could all work together in harmony,” reflects Connie.

Ultimately, they moved their ranch from Montana’s Bitterroot Valley to eastern Oregon.  There, they found the open spaces they needed to run a viable ranching operation and a wide array of consumer marketplaces west of the Cascades.

In 1984, Doc and Connie started conducting consumer research in places like Portland and Salem, and working with a group of their new-found ranching neighbors to produce naturally-raised beef for these marketplaces.

The group agreed to form the consumer-driven beef marketing cooperative — Oregon Country Beef (now called Country Natural Beef), which originally was comprised of 14 ranching families. The venture called for little financial commitment on behalf of each ranch — a good thing considering how financially strapped they were back then. Each participant chipped in a few head of good calves to get things moving forward, and for the first few years the co-op produced about three head of cattle each week.

All that changed in 1990 when a Japanese restaurant chain started buying about 60 head a week. To help defray the cost of meeting the new demand, the Japanese firm agreed to pay in advance $200 per head to help defray feeding costs.

Since that time, consumer interest in naturally raised food has increased exponentially – and Country Natural Beef, with its focus on economic and environmental sustainability, has been well positioned to tap into this growth.

Today, Country Natural Beef is one of the nation’s leaders in natural beef production. The cooperative consists of 120 family ranches located in Oregon, Washington, California, Nevada, Idaho, Wyoming, New Mexico, North Dakota, Colorado, Texas, Montana, Arizona, and Hawaii. These families own more than 100,000 mother cows managed on 6.3 million acres of private and public lands. And, they have developed important working relationships with leading restauranteurs and retailers across the nation.

“Our consumers know where the cattle come from, and they know the people who produce it,” adds Doc. “They know what the producers’ land ethics are. They know the product will taste good every time. They know that the cattle are treated well. They know that we embrace humane animal-handling practices. These things have allowed us to remain economically and environmentally viable, two of the goals we set out to accomplish more than 30 years ago.”


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About Claresse:

People around the world love to eat fish. Not only in the Netherlands, where total fish consumption increases 7 percent annually. Claresse offers a sustainable answer to growing global demand. Claresse is a freshwater fish that is a naturally occurring cross of two members of the European catfish family. It is an excellent, sustainable alternative to over-fished Whitefish.


The fish are cultivated by Anova, in covered ponds with a unique recycling system, wasting very little water and energy, therefore, environmental impact is kept to a minimum.

They swim in water of the highest quality, have enough food, and are not restricted from their natural behaviour.

Food conversion is very low: even less than 1:1. There is no question of using hormones or GMO feed (feed that has been enriched by genetically modified organisms). The farms are family-owned, and work closely together with specialists, thereby guaranteeing the best quality.

  1. unique recycling system with a minimal environmental impact
  2. care for the welfare of the fish
  3. no use of hormones or GMO feed
  4. 24-hour supervision by specialists


Latin name - Heterobranchus longifilis x Clarias garlepinus

Origin - Netherlands

FORM & SIZE - Boneless, skinless fillet - 7 to 14oz


TASTE PROFILE - A mild fish that is adaptable to a wide range of cuisines and preparations.  Browns up beautifully in the pan.  Fish are purged in a clean water source for three days prior to harvest to ensure consistency of quality and flavor.  This purging, in addition to the recirculating systems in which the fish are raised, results in a clean taste with none of the musty flavor often associated with freshwater fish.

HEALTH - Rich in protein - 100g serving has 18.3g of protein
Rich in omega 3's - 100g serving has 750mg per of Omega 3, almost as much as salmon.

HUSBANDRY - Full traceability and control throughout the chain of production.  Fish are farm-raised in tanks.  Fish are not treated with antibiotics or hormones.  The tanks are not treated with herbicides, and the eggs are not treated with formaldehyde, as may be the case with conventional farms.

FEED - Fed a plant-based GMO-free diet for an exceptionally low feed conversion ratio of 0.80:1.




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