“Take care of your mind, your body will thank you. Take care of your body,
your mind will thank you.”
– Debbie Hampton
_The Daily Tonic is a two to five minute read sharing science backed
health news and tips, all while getting you to crack a smile or even_ lol on occasion.
Tuesday. Here’s something we’ve never written about before–regenerativeagriculture is a system that can produce healthier food, all while helpingheal our planet at the same time. In case you haven’t noticed the pandemicdisproportionately impacting unhealthy people and places like the PacificNorthwest and Canada reaching record breaking highs this summer, these are twoproblems we desperately need to solve. So what’s the latest on regenerativeag? Let’s dive in.
Everyone Wants Those Carbon Credits!
So I know we talk about it a lot, but let’s start off reviewing whatregenerative agriculture actually is. In a nutshell, it is a term used todescribe farming practices that go beyond just organic. Regenerative farms andranches use methods that don’t just produce healthier food, they also buildhealthier soil and proactively capture carbon from the atmosphere, making it apowerful tool when aiming to reverse climate change. They do this by plantingcover crops year round so that there is never any bare soil, they don’t useheavy tiling machinery, they use animal manure as natural fertilizer insteadof damaging chemicals, and they rotate animals often to best replicate howthese animals would graze in nature. The results of all this effort? Healthierfood, healthier soil, healthier habitats for wildlife, and a healthier planet.So what is the latest incentive for more farmers and ranchers to move in thisdirection? Money. What better incentive than a little cold, hard cash? Thecarbon credit market is currently set up to reward regenerative practices bypaying out farmers a fixed dollar amount per ton of carbon they are able tosequester when adopting new farmingpractices.Think about it as just another crop a farmer can sell on the open market. Afarmer can now get paid for the cattle they raise, vegetables they grow, andthe carbon they sequester. There is one unfortunate thing, though. In orderto qualify for carbon credits, you have to be adopting NEW regenerativemethods to your farmingoperation.Ahhhh… dang it. It was almost too good to be true. Say you happen to be one ofthe early pioneers in the regenerative space. You’ve been planting covercrops, building soil, and rotating your animals for years now, helpingsequester tons of carbon in the process. You now want to go to Mr. CarbonCredit and get paid. Tough luck. Since you’ve already been doing all therights things, you don’t qualify. The way the current carbon credit market isset up, it will mainly benefit large agribusiness companies that currentlyfarm using exclusively conventional methods, but plan to transition into amore regenerative system down the line. Now this is obviously still a goodthing and a big step in the right direction, but it is disappointing that thesmaller farmers that took a risk and made these changes before there was amonetary incentive won’t qualify for these benefits. It is also inevitablethat big agribusiness companies will find loopholes in the carbon creditsystem to do just the bare minimum to earn these credits, without actuallymaking significant change because it is the right thing to do. It seems thelittle guy always gets the short end of the stick.
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Better Meat Is The Answer
Be advised–this picture is pretty upsetting, but that is exactly why it is soimportant. Oftentimes the argument for shifting to a more plant based diet isone of compassion for the animals we raise for food. I get it. Pigs, chickens,and cows shouldn’t have to suffer needlessly. However, things aren’t as simpleas “no meat equals more compassion.” Many plant based alternatives come frommonoculture operations that indirectly harm wildlife by destroying habitatsand negatively impacting climate change. Completely cutting out meat isn’t theanswer. Better meat is the answer. Just look at thiscomparisonbetween conventional methods used for raising pork compared to how places likeWhite Oak Pastures raise their pigs. There is a right and wrong way to raiseanimals for meat. It is up to us to vote with our dollars and push our foodsystem in a more compassionate direction.
- How about some golden coffee on a Tuesday? Let’s do it!
- Looking for another regenerative meat brand to check out? Here is a new brand we found that is based in California.
- Wine on a Tuesday? Make it booze free with this awesome brand for a refreshing, delicious adult beverage fit for a school night.
- Want a quick listen on how food can cause and heal disease? Check this mini podcast episode out!
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