One Size Fits None: A Farm Girl’s Search for the Promise of Regenerative Agriculture
Published: August 2, 2019
Category: Non-GMO News, The Organic & Non-GMO Report Newsletter
by Stephanie Anderson (University of Nebraska Press)
Once a farm girl, always a farm girl….but one young woman raised on a conventional cattle ranch has discovered there’s more than one way to raise animals and tend the land. To her surprise, the way she’s chosen turns out to be far better for the soil, the animals, and the future of farming itself.
Stephanie Anderson grew up on a ranch near Bison, South Dakota, where her father raised cattle and crops using industrial farming methods. It wasn’t until she began writing for a farm-and-ranch newspaper that some unsettling contradictions emerged. Initially propped up by land-grant professors and state agriculture officials, she defended conventional farming, waxing on the benefits of GMOs and fancy farm equipment and downplaying issues like antibiotic residues. But the more she learned about “family farms,” CAFOS, and megadairies, the more confusion and shame she felt.
She realized everything she believed about farming and food was a lie—was “wrong side up,” and not a viable way forward. “I was part of a powerful agribusiness system glorifying the ‘progress’ of conventional agriculture…industrial farming packaged to look like family farming.”
Regenerative agriculture became attractive as a way to tailor farming to local conditions—prioritizing diversity, maximizing ecosystems using nature’s own tools, and working midsize farms.
Anderson’s lyrical reflections are a call to join forces with Nature to become joint stewards of our land, restoring its resources so it can direct us into the “next wave of green food production.”
Source: Stone Pier Press
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