LIVING

Farming for the Future:​ Why Forward-Thinking Brands Are Using Regenerative Agriculture

April 22nd, 2020

Regenerative agriculture isn’t new, but modern food brands are making waves for their efforts to make sustainable farming more commonplace. Here’s a quick definition of regenerative agriculture: This holistic approach to farming focuses on practices like soil restoration and supporting ecosystem diversity, which ultimately helps reduce climate change.

In recent years, many brands have doubled down on existing efforts or committed to making the kinds of significant changes that’ll improve the farming landscape in the years to come. For example, in 2019 General Mills committed to advance regenerative agriculture—with an emphasis on healthy soil—across more than one million acres (roughly 20 percent of its North American sourcing footprint).

Regenerative Agriculture Brands at Thrive Market

One of Thrive Market’s priorities is to help you shop easily for what’s most important to you. Whether you’re on the hunt for cruelty-free skin care or paleo pantry staples, our values represent the myriad ways our members care for their health.

One of the values we champion is regenerative agriculture. The brands with this designation are some of the industry’s most innovative, employing a variety of beneficial practices such as planting cover crops and composting. Our own line features Regeneratively Grown Organic Coconut Oil, which is ethically sourced from Sri Lanka—intercropping and mulching are two of the techniques local farmers use to enrich the soil. You can also chew on spicy pork jerky made from pasture-raised pigs who spent their days foraging the land in Georgia. You can also buy member-favorites from Seventh Generation, Chomps, and Serenity Kids.


The Future of Food and Farming

What is the future of farming? We’re hoping it involves more of the ideas below. Regenerative agriculture not only grows nutrient-dense ingredients, but benefits the planet in myriad ways—here are three.

Better for the land

For all things sustainable meat, EPIC has been a leader since its launch in 2013. A first-of-its-kind seal is the latest innovation making it easy for consumers to see how their choices are making a difference. Called the Land to Market Ecological Outcome Verification (or EOV) this seal was developed in partnership with the Savory Institute, and is the world’s first verified regenerative sourcing solution for meat, dairy, wool, and leather.

Better for farmers

Known for its impressive assortment of teas, Organic India is committed to supporting its large network of wildcrafters and farmers. The brand regularly holds regenerative agriculture trainings, and even covers fees for farmers to receive organic certifications.

Better for communities

Lifting communities out of poverty and creating ethical supply chains is one of the innovative ways Dr. Bronner’s has been working with global communities for years. With its mint initiative in India, for example, the brand partners with local company Pavitramenthe, which is located in a region working to transform land suffering from 40 years of industrialized agriculture practices. Worm compost is one of the secrets to success, as well as creating a centralized compost operation that allows Dr. Bronner’s to generate large amounts of soil and offer it to local farmers at a subsidized rate.

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Nicole GulottaNicole Gulotta is a writer, author, and tea enthusiast.

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