Going beyond Organic and Sustainable
In the 21st century we feel that “Sustainable” is just not enough.
We use “regenerative agriculture” principles and practices on our farm. So what is regenerative agriculture?
According to Dr. Mercola, “Regenerative agriculture is one of the best ways to prevent global disaster, save our health, and build a sustainable economy.” Wikipeadia defines Regenerative Agriculture as:
“…a sub-sector practice of organic farming designed to build soil health or to regenerate unhealthy soils. The practices associated with regenerative agriculture are those identified with other approaches to organic farming, including maintaining a high percentage of organic matter in soils, minimum tillage, biodiversity, composting, mulching, crop rotation, cover crops, and green manures.”
Here is a definition from the Rodale Institute:
“Regenerative organic agriculture improves the resources it uses, rather than destroying or depleting them. It is a holistic systems approach to agriculture that encourages continual on-farm innovation for environmental, social, economic and spiritual well being.”
And the best part is, there is no downside. If we nurture our soils, and grow with healthier methods, we all win. Our food will be tastier, more nutritious, (higher nutrient density) and grown with a lower carbon footprint; better for our palates, our bodies, our environment, and our planet. It is a win-win-win for us all! And Regenerative farming can sequester carbon and help reverse global warming!
Community-supported/shared agriculture (CSA) is locally based food growing and distribution economic model. It is predicated on a network, or association of individuals, who have pledged to support one or more local farms. In this way, growers and consumers share the risks and benefits of food production which can enhance the sense of community partnership between producer and consumer.
A Whole-farm CSA suggests that the entire farm is dedicated to producing food for this community sponsored/shared agriculture system. This also produces regionally relevant and adapted farm products and foods and often niche markets and products can be developed that highlight and feature the particular skills and interests of the members of the farm.
What do we do?
Our food is grown without fossil-fuel based pesticides or fertilizers. We heat our greenhouses with wood and passive solar. We grow without tilling the soil. And we limit our use of nonrenewable resources like black plastic mulch on the soil. We feel we need to consider all of these factors and more if we really want to build a secure, local, and truly sustainable food system.
Links and Resources
Learn more about the benefits and practice of various forms of Regenerative and organic no-till agriculture:
Delaware County Permaculture Meetup Group