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The Benefits of Regenerative Farming

Updated: Oct 6, 2023

Gif Source: Giphy

Regenerative farming is a way of farming that is promoted by the World Economic Forum. This type of farming focuses on the health of the soil and the animals raised. It does not use synthetic pesticides and fertilizer, or heavy machinery. Regenerative farming reduces waste and pollution and uses a no till or medium tilling method for crops.

The soil fertility is increased using crop covers, crop rotation, composting, using animal manure, managing animal grazing, and feeding animals healthy food. It reduces pollution caused by farming in the air and water and improves the quality of food and livestock raised.

Farmers plant a variety of crops to increase the health of the soil and improve the quality of foods. The land is better able to filter and retain water and soil nutrient's needed to grow healthy crops. Many farmers are turning to this way of farming because they are concerned about the negative effects of industrial farming and chemicals used.

Principles of Regenerative Farming

Photo Source: Vale Da Lama

Regenerative farming promotes the relationship between plants, animals, people, the soil, water, and air. It works to sustain and improve the environment.

Regenerative farming focuses on improving soil health by planting a variety of different crops and not using synthetic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. The use cover cropping the practice of planting roots in the soil after harvesting plants to reduce soil erosion and improve water retention. This practice improves the quality of the soil.

Another tactic used by farmers is intensive rotational grazing. This allows livestock to graze in pastures and fields. It improves soil fertility and provides animals with a healthier diet.

Composting is used to add nutrients to the soil. This is the practice of turning food waste into fertilizers. They integrate trees and shrubs into the land design to resemble forests and how they grow. Planting shrubs, trees, and other plants helps manage erosion and protect crops.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar

Photo Source: Flicker: Sharon Chen

Hopdoddy Burger Bar, a chain based in Austin; TX, uses meat raised by local regenerative farming. They are shifting away from traditional farms and using local farms that practice regenerative farming.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar has partnered with Source of Nature to source meat and spread awareness of regenerative farming. The chain uses 100% grassfed beef and bison in their burgers, organic eggs, and raw cheese in their menu. They supported 14,000 acres of plants and animals raised by regenerative farmers.

Grazing Sheep Source: En Wikipedia

Poultry and Regenerative Farming

Jeff Siewicki was a pharmacist that became a farmer. He started a garden at home and later decided to try to raise chickens. He learned about regenerative farming and the benefits of these practices. Jeff started Vital Mission Farm. He says it took him a long time to make the farm profitable.

After a few years of low profits, Jeff tried some new methods of promotion. He tried direct selling by inviting a chef to prepare samples of his product and showing the chicken he raised to customers. The chef ordered 12 chickens to use in his recipes. Another tactic he used was to call his business a pasture poultry farm and sell to restaurants and wholesalers. He sold chicken parts at local farmers markets all techniques he used to increase sales.

In 2021 he left his job as a pharmacist to run the farm. He designed classes to teach and help other small farms learn the techniques of regenerative farming. He feeds the animals a high protein food source and uses renewable energy for water use. The farm grows grass for the animals to graze on as part of their diet.

Timberwolf Orchards

Timberwolf Orchards is a five-acre orchard with land leased from Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. The orchard raises high quality apples using regenerative farming. The farm has been in business for three years.

The apple trees are surrounded by plants that look like weeds. This is what improves the soil health, and they use manure from goats at a local farm nearby for fertilizer.

Urban Farming: Photo Source Energy News

Soul Fire Farm

Soul Fire Farm teaches regenerative farm practices and stewardship to minorities, black, and indigenous people. The 80-acre farm provides training in techniques, using equipment, business management, marketing, carpentry, crop planning, soil fertility, and growing your own food. It is located in Grafton, New York.

The farm has a youth education program, urban planting program, and community support for its regenerative agriculture program. The Soul Food Farming Immersion program teaches the skills needed to succeed in this type of farming.

Azuluna Farms

Azuluna Farms in Woodstock CT helps small farms learn to raise livestock that uses regenerative farming methods. In their system a hub farm distributes resources to farms, provides livestock, feed, equipment, and veterinary care. They teach farmers regenerative farming techniques.

They compensate farmers by buying the animals at a profit and paying competitive wages. They plan to use this model to improve agriculture in New England and get more farmers involved in regenerative agriculture. Azuluna Farms raises chickens, lamb. pigs, and livestock dogs that guard farm animals. They use no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides, practice rotational grazing methods, and biodiversity in growing plants.

Tilling Photo Source: En. Wikipedia

Information on Glyphosate in Weed Killer and Safer Alternatives

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References Used For Article

Regenerative Agriculture 101, Natural Resources Defense Council

Meet the Poultry Farmer Teaching Others How to Make Regenerative Farming Add Up, Kelcie Ottoes, Modern Farmer, September 2023

Five Benefits of Regenerative Agriculture, World Economic Forum, January 2023

Hopdoddy Shifts Toward Regenerative Agricultural Practices, QSR Magazine, September 2023

Timberland Orchard: Where Regenerative Farming and Soil Practices Are Taking Root, Isabella Abbott, 90.5 Radio WESA September 14, 2023

Rensselaer Soul Fire Farm Wins Prestigious Award, by Sara Rizzo, WTEN Radio, Albany

Azuluna Farm Website, 2022, Site by Wandersoul Company

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