This is the second post of a 2-part series. To read the first post, click here.
By Chad Adams
Our approach to agriculture exists nowhere else on the planet at the scale we envision. It relies heavily on rotational management of animals and crops. Our farm management goals are long-term diversity, health, and productivity. This approach results in a transformative impact on how people grow food and understand their relationship with the land. In the second part of this blog series, we will discuss how our approach ensures reliable returns and offers multiple benefits to people and the land.
1) Improve environmental health
By building healthy, living soil, our farming approach prevents erosion and sequesters carbon in the ground. The organisms living in the soil create a dynamic system that is resilient and forms the organic foundation of all life above ground. Through this approach to sustainable agriculture, we anticipate increasing organic matter by 5-8%. This living soil also acts as a sponge, holding and releasing water slowly over time, reducing flash floods and the impacts of drought. Every 1% increase in organic matter in the soil increases the ground’s capacity to hold water by 16,000 gallons per acre.
2) Produce healthy food for people
Sustainable agriculture produces superior fruits and vegetables with more nutrients and better taste. These crops derive their nutrients from exchanges in living soil, rather than from chemical fertilizers that typically only provide three major nutrients. With more trace minerals and micronutrients, food is rich in diverse building blocks that are good for the human body. A diet of such food can help people lead healthy lives and avoid some chronic and debilitating diseases.
3) Enhance wildlife habitat
A diverse agricultural system provides habitat for wildlife. Rich pastures have numerous grasses and flowers and provide habitat for native birds, insects and small mammals. Perennial orchards of fruit trees and understory crops planted on the periphery of pastures and woodlands improve forest habitat connectivity and increase diversity on forest edges. Our approach welcomes wild inhabitants as natural pest control, pollinators, and productive members of the living system.
4) Reduce use of fossil fuels
By leveraging nature’s ability to produce fertilizers and control pests, our agricultural approach uses less machinery and less synthetic fertilizers and chemicals. It reduces the reliance on expensive fossil fuels and materials derived from them, and protects farmers from the impacts of fluctuating fuel prices.
5) Support vibrant communities
Ultimately, our approach to agriculture sparks vibrant community development where people have deepened relationships with nature that create a sense of ownership, stewardship and connection that last for generations. It supports locally owned businesses, high quality jobs, stable economic benefits and connections to local culture and vision.