The Way We Farm Reflects Our Understanding of the Ecosystem
Dr. Steve Rosenzweig, Soil Scientist at ESMC Founding Circle Member General Mills, writes in The Guardian that throughout the history of industrialized agriculture, farmers and researchers mainly considered the physical and chemical components of soil. Soil was and largely still is appreciated merely as a vessel for seeds and fertilizers, an inert medium for growing plants. This limited conception of soil has led to its neglect. In this opinion piece, he highlights the opportunities available to improve soil health through regenerative agricultural practices. Read the full article here
Regenerative – The Word Defining Global Food and Ag in 2021
Triple Pundit (December 11)
Regenerative could become the key word that sums up 2021 if the new COVID-19 vaccines are effective and their distribution can be scaled worldwide. But in any event, recent trends in the global food sector suggest regenerative agriculture will become more mainstream in 2021 as both consumers and companies realize we’ve got to find a way to tackle global emissions in the coming decade. The article highlights the work of ESMC Founding Circle Members General Mills and Danone; read in full here.
Rabobank Recognizes General Mills, Pepsico for Leadership
Food Business News (December 4)
ESMC Founding Circle Member General Mills, Inc., along with PepsiCo, Inc. and Imperfect Foods were recognized by Rabobank for their leadership in industry stewardship, sustainability, and innovation. The three companies were announced as recipients of the annual Rabobank North America Leadership Awards during the Food & Agribusiness Summit, which was held virtually earlier this month. The awards celebrate both large-scale food & agribusiness corporations and fast-growing emerging companies that are setting examples of industry stewardship, sustainability, and innovation across the region. Read the full article here.
Focusing on Regenerative Agriculture and Moving to Renewable Electricity, Nestlé Redoubles Efforts to Combat Climate Change
Nestlé (December 3)
As a signatory of the UN Business Ambition for 1.5°C pledge, ESMC Founding Circle Member Nestlé is one of the first companies to share its detailed, time-bound plan for Net Zero and to do so ahead of schedule. The company is taking measures to halve its emissions by 2030 and achieve net zero by 2050 – even as the company grows. Actions focus on supporting farmers and suppliers to advance regenerative agriculture, planting hundreds of millions of trees within the next 10 years and completing the company’s transition to 100 percent renewable electricity by 2025. Additionally, Nestlé is continuously increasing the number of ‘carbon neutral’ brands. Read the announcement in full here.
The Nature Conservancy Is Hiring a Director, Climate Investment Origination
ESMC Founding Circle Member The Nature Conservancy is hiring a Director, Climate Investment Origination, to lead the organization’s efforts to scope and originate investments in Natural Climate Solutions, which generate carbon sequestration through ecosystem management, protection and restoration. They will be a member of NatureVest’s Origination Team, reporting to the Deputy Managing Director of Investment Origination and working closely with regional and global strategy staff to identify, structure and close NCS investment opportunities globally. Read the full announcement here.
How to Measure the Profitability of Conservation Agriculture
Environmental Defense Fund (December 14)
Policy and business leaders across the U.S. agricultural sector are laying out ambitious targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving water quality, and building soil health, presenting a growing need to understand the financial value of on-farm conservation practices. To close this information gap, Environmental Defense Fund published A Practitioner’s Guide to Conducting Budget Analyses for Conservation Agriculture, developed in partnership with ESMC Funder Natural Resources Conservation Service, ESMC Legacy Partner Members Soil Health Partnership, American Farmland Trust, and Field to Market, as well as K·Coe Isom, Precision Conservation Management, and Datu Research. Read the full announcement here.
Combatting Climate Change on US Cropland
American Farmland Trust
A new report by ESMC Legacy Partner Member American Farmland Trust focuses on the significant potential of no-till and cover crop practices to increase soil carbon sequestration and reduce nitrous oxide emissions for a net reduction in GHG emissions. This report summarizes the current state of the science surrounding these practices and their impact on soil organic carbon and GHG emissions, including important limitations of our current understanding. Additionally, the authors outline an achievable path toward harnessing the sequestration potential of U.S. soils. Download the full report here.
Unique Process ‘Cleans’ Crop Water Runoff When Using Dairy Manure as Fertilizer
AgriLife Today (November 30)
Dairy manure is a natural crop fertilizer, and ESMC Technical Contractor Texas A&M AgriLife scientists believe they have discovered a way to make sure that the valuable resource stays on crops where it is applied as a fertilizer, and out of waterways, where it is a potential pollutant. Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Tarleton State University scientists are joining forces to develop and demonstrate a biochar-assisted phytoremediation system for enhancing water quality during dairy manure application in some crop production areas. Read the full article here.