Did you know it was earth day sometime last week? Then why bother today?
Because it's about EARTH !!
We should celebrate earth everyday as our existence depends on it.
No matter how sophisticated and complex and powerful our institutions, we are still exactly as dependent on the earth as the earthworm
- WENDELL BERRY
95% of the food is grown on earth (seafood comes from oceans and rivers); food that nourishes us, makes us who we are, Humans !! Being intelligent beings, it is not only obligatory but wise to take care of our earth. But how?
The world's food system is responsible for about one quarter of the planet warming greenhouse gases that humans generate each year. That includes raising and harvesting all the plants, animals and animal products we eat -- as well as processing, packaging and shipping food to markets all over the world. If you eat food, you're part of this system.
Conventional agriculture produces food while damaging soil through use of chemical fertilizers, mono-cropping, soil tilling which produces GHG (green house gases) emissions which are largely overlooked when people are singing praises of eating vegetables. Grasslands which can act as reservoir of stored carbon (in the soil) are being damaged by mono-cropping which uses harmful chemicals that not only destroys soil but the run-off pollutes rivers and oceans. The food obtained with such methods is also sub-par as the chemicals used in these crops end up in the food.
What do we do, you ask?
Make better food choices that not only support your health but also the health of the planet. Fortunately, both of the above virtues come in a single package - regenerative agriculture.
"With more people living in cities and buying their food in grocery stores instead of raising it themselves, many have lost their connection with the fact that humans ARE nature. We are animals! Everything eats and is eaten. We don't like to admit that something has died for our life. We don't accept responsibility for how our food is raised. And while factory farming is wrong, plant-based agriculture can also be incredibly destructive and cruel, and is no basis for an optimal human diet."
- Diana Rogers, RD
WHAT IS REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE?
In general, regenerative agriculture aims to mimic nature’s natural systems as closely as possible. This means moving away from producing one crop in a monoculture system and integrating cover crops, livestock, and other measures. Cover crops are plants that are used to slow down erosion, improve soil health, advance water availability, and control weeds as opposed to food crops like corn or wheat that are grown for human consumption.
It also encourages farmers and ranchers to take a complete, holistic approach to manage their operations instead of focusing on only a few variables like yield or profit.
Here are a few important things to know about the regenerative agriculture movement.
THE 5 KEY PRINCIPLES
North Dakota farmer Gabe Brown is a popular name in the regenerative farming circle. After becoming disenchanted with the conventional farming system, Brown set out to adopt a new way of farming for his acreage.
Minimize or eliminate tillage
Keep the soil surface covered to eliminate erosion
Keep living plant roots in the soil as long as possible
"In order to have a truly regenerative system, we must support healthy plants AND animals. This means that lettuce, kale, and trees are just as important as crickets, mice, birds, pigs and cattle."
- Diana Rogers, RD
No one would like their food to have chemicals (chemical fertilizers, pesticides, glyphosate) in them, That is why you should prefer regeneratively raised or organic vegetables, fruits, meat, eggs and poultry. But not everyone is privileged to get the best of foods because they are relatively expensive (sadly, govt does not incentivize farmers for adopting regenerative and organic practices). Keep in mind, eating conventionally produced vegetable is better than not consuming them at all; in the same way, consuming non-regenerative meat (one that uses antibiotics and hormones) is much better than not consuming meat at all.
In order to understand the elaborate differences between conventional and regenerative agriculture. Visit this link.
"Not only are you producing something that's healthier, but I can see now that I'm building my soils back up. And there's something really freeing knowing I'm building something for the future."
- Keith Burns
Say no to fake food
We've been hearing a lot these days about fake burgers. All the chic arguments are on display for laboratory-produced meat or lab meat.
Given that fake meat is produced through tissue culture, the cells of which require "serum" which consists of sugars derived from corn, amino-acids derived from soybeans, and animal blood called fetal bovine serum. Fake meat is quite simply an environmental disaster.
Companies like to fabricate a story that their manufactured products save animals from suffering, restore human health, and improve the environment.
But don't be fooled.
The main driver behind these products is profit.
On the other hand, cattle can consume crop residues and other plant matter that we humans can't digest, on land we can't crop, while increasing ecosystem health.
Can highly processed, fake meat products do that? Nope.
Why not just eat meat from humanely raised cattle?
Support Earth and Nourish Yourself
Here is a list of actions that you can start taking right away to support your own health and your mother earth:
Make better food choices. Say no to processed junk foods which not only don't provide any nutrition but also contain chemicals, additives, synthetic vitamins, and soybean derivatives that deeply damage soil health and your own health. Focus on well raised meat, fish, eggs and poultry and organic fruits, vegetables etc.
Say no to fake meat (plant-based meat products) that falsely make claims to care about animals and restoring human health.
Support your local farmers, ranchers and butchers. Your local farmers may not be aware about regenerative agriculture. Hence, take an initiative to educate them.
Grow a vegetable garden in your backyard. You will not only produce organic food for your own consumption but maintaining and growing crops will keep you connected to nature. You can use all your kitchen waste, rather than throwing it in garbage, to prepare a compost to be used to enrich soil.