Transitioning to more sustainable agriculture is crucial as many current practices can have grave consequences, including soil degradation and deforestation. Agriculture has the potential to harm the environment but also has enormous potential for healing it. Many organizations recognize this and promote regenerative agriculture to help improve ecosystems.
Regenerative agriculture is based on decades of research and uses farming principles that mimic nature. This approach uses a variety of practices, such as agroforestry or well-managed grass grazing, to build healthy soils and thriving agro-ecosystems. These practices have many benefits, including richer soil, healthier water systems, and increased biodiversity. They also help to strengthen farming communities.
Organizations Promoting Regenerative Farming Practices
The shift to regenerative agricultural practices can be difficult for farmers and companies. It is nevertheless an effective way to achieve the impact of a variety of objectives, ranging from the effects of climate change on farmer livelihoods. The list below of innovative businesses is a small sample of the current state of affairs in the business world.
When they incorporate regenerative agriculture into their supply chain, businesses make strides in balancing the need for profit with purpose and aligning core business operations with a positive environmental impact.
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There are a variety of ways that a firm can encourage regenerative farming within the supply chain. Many companies are leading the way in regenerative agriculture within the global supply chain. They are working together and innovating to assist their farmers in adopting and implementing regenerative farming methods on a larger scale.
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Here are few organizations that are working to improve agriculture worldwide in order to celebrate the hard work of people and organizations who have been involved in restoring agro-ecosystems.
Walmart has shifted its regenerative farming investments to crucial commodities like wheat, corn, soy, and rice. As part of this initiative, Walmart has partnered with the Midwest Row Crop Collaborative (MRCC), a cross-sectoral initiative aiming to help producers in the Midwest adopt regenerative farming methods. Together, the two organizations will collaborate with 30,000 farmers to promote regenerative farming practices on 30 million acres across the Midwest.
Microsoft invests in regenerative farming using a two-pronged approach:
- By purchasing carbon credits tied to sustainable agricultural practices as well as soil health.
- By advancing new technologies that farmers can utilize on the field.
For instance, in partnership with Land O’Lakes, Microsoft is developing a set of tools for technology that will aid farmers in increasing their profitability and shift into more eco-friendly farming methods like no-till, precision nutrient control, and cover crop cultivation.
The year 2021 was the first time PepsiCo introduced a new 2030 plan to implement practices promoting regenerative agriculture across 7 million acres. This is equivalent to the total area needed to provide plants for its products. The initiative is simultaneously advancing its climate goals as well as its commitment that it will sustainably procure 100 percent of its essential ingredients by the year 2030.
General Mills has committed to expanding regenerative agriculture on one million acres of land in the next decade. Through this initiative, the company is taking steps to focus on the farmer. The company has employed several pilot programs to learn about the specific regional and crop issues faced by farmers and come up with solutions that will benefit the farmers. The company works with farmers to provide several days of workshops on the principles of regenerative agriculture as well as one-on-one technical assistance and individualized coaching.
To understand and further refine farming methods, the company has created a Regenerative Agriculture Self-Assessment tool. The tool aids farmers in mapping the alignment between their farming practices and regenerative principles. It is applicable regardless of the farm size or crop type (crop and livestock), as well as for conventional or organic farms.
In 2021 Unilever unveiled a series of Regenerative Agriculture Principles and implementation guides to improve its long-standing Sustainable Agriculture Code. These Principles will help guide the company and its suppliers to better protect soils by increasing biodiversity, enhancing the quality of water as well as storing carbon, and making the land more productive.
The company will be testing its Regenerative Agriculture Principles through a variety of the company’s “Lighthouse Programmes.” In these programs, the organization will collaborate with suppliers and farmers to determine the level of support required and then set up monitoring systems to evaluate the effectiveness of practices on the soil.
Together with Conservation International, the French-based multinational Kering has launched its Regenerative Fund for Nature, which provides grants to farmers’ groups, project directors, NGOs, and other parties involved in promoting sustainable farming practices that are used in fashion. The Fund has prioritized projects located in India, France, Argentina, Mongolia, South Africa, and Spain.
Outdoor apparel, footwear, and accessory manufacturer VF Corp support regenerative farming across its brands. For instance, VF Corporation is working with its Timberland, Vans, and The North Face brands to create and scale up a regeneratively grown supply chain for rubber in Vietnam. Timberland is expanding its inventory of regenerative leather. Vans and The North Face have committed to sourcing most of their best products from sustainable, responsible, and sustainable sources.
In collaboration together with Indigo Ag, The North Face offers a reward in the form of a financial bonus to farmers who adopt sustainable farming practices. The company is offering farmers who grow cotton for their product and carbon credits for those who adopt methods of regenerative agriculture that retain carbon and help restore soil health.
Grupo Bimbo, the world’s largest baking business, is among the first giant corporations outside the United States and Europe to take on bold regenerative farming pledges. Headquartered in Mexico City, Grupo Bimbo has partnered with CIMMYT to develop their Bimbo Sustainable Corn and Wheat program to help farmers transition to regenerative farming methods across more than 14,800 acres.
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