Linda Poole

NCAT Regenerative Grazing Specialist
When at the grocery store, I usually purchase organic products. But living in the Northern Great Plains, I see dust storms rolling off organic grain fields where farmers depend on tillage to manage weeds and other pests. In response, I pretty much don't eat grain anymore, because tillage has a bevy of soil/climate/water problems just as does traditional ag with all its herbicides and chemical fertilizers. The food I raise at home, and what I'd like to buy at the store, would be both regenerative and organic -- soil building, water conserving, biodiversity-friendly, and nutrient dense; as free of tillage as it is of GMOs, herbicides, and manufactured fertilizers.

A recent article on this topic in the Atlanta Business Journal invites us to:

Meet the farmers trying to grow healthier food in the Southwest​

Research seems to support the link between healthy soil and healthy food. A study published in 2022 shows farms that practiced soil regeneration grew crops with higher levels of vitamins and minerals than farms using conventional farming methods.
La Semilla grows food using organic and regenerative practices, but Jasso said labels are a tricky issue: They help people make decisions when purchasing food, but many people don’t know what those labels entail. The organic certification requires farms to not use prohibited substances – such as synthetic fertilizers – but doesn’t go far enough, he believes.

“Organic practices, even at a large scale, are ripping up the earth and extractive,” he said. “They’re just paying for the label and using the required materials, so it’s not like a mindset. … Regenerative ag is sort of a buzz word right now. The word we use is agro-ecological. It’s about your relationship with soil more than any standards or certificates.”
Researchers recently conducted what they call a first-of-its-kind study to test these practices. Published in the journal PeerJ this year, the study analyzed 10 farms across the country that had practiced no-till, cover cropping and crop rotations for at least five to 10 years. The farmers grew peas, sorghum, corn or soybeans on one acre using the regenerative practices, and the same crop on a neighboring plot using conventional farming methods.

The crops grown with regenerative practices had higher levels of vitamins K, E, B1 and B2, the results show. These vitamins are essential for the human diet because they’re involved with building bones, protecting cells from damage and converting food into energy. The regenerative crops also had more calcium, a mineral that supports the development of healthy bones and strengthens teeth.

Read the full article at https://www.atlantabusinessjournal....ying-to-grow-healthier-food-in-the-southwest/.

Members online

No members online now.