Once again, we asked the question to our friends in the farming community.
What is Regenerative?
The answers continue to inspire us.
In Episode 2 we get the privilege of hearing from Jeff Moyer and Pat Kerrigan.
Jeff Moyer is a world-renowned authority in organic agriculture. His expertise includes organic crop production systems with a focus on weed management, cover crops, crop rotations, equipment modification and use, and facilities design. Patrick Kerrigan is the Retail Education Coordinator for Organic Consumers Association and focuses on transitioning food systems toward organic and regenerative agriculture as quickly as possible. Both Jeff and Pat are playing critical roles in helping farmers and consumers move toward regenerative systems.
In this conversation Jeff and Pat dig into their work and how it is incentivizing farmers to shift toward regenerative agriculture. Both of them have a deep history in the organic movement and a desire to push farmers and consumers toward healthier food systems. They answer the question of what is regenerative and so much more.
In this conversation we learned from Jeff Moyer that Rodale Institute is working toward a Regenerative Organic standard. Jeff says he looks forward to, “a standard that infers continuous improvement. So it’s dynamic, it’s always growing and improving and I think the consuming public is really looking for that in the marketplace.” Jeff realizes that consumers are in the driver seat and having a standard that can represent their needs is going to be the solution, taking decades of work in organic certification to the next level, toward regeneration. At the same time the two agreed that farmers need to have the education, documentation and sound science behind the practices they will need to implement to be regenerative.
Pat Kerrigan was really excited about engagement on a state level and wanted to know what we can do to get our state representatives to incentivize farmers to transition toward regenerative. Jeff’s home state of Pennsylvania is the second largest organic producer in the U.S. and in 2019 legislators passed a farm bill that will provide services to transition farmers toward organic. The bill is increasing market opportunities and making Pennsylvania the nation’s leading organic state. Pat agreed that, “we always want to identify the best practices and then how to replicate them. So one thing I’m thinking of is, we need to help you tell this amazing story.” Pat wondered how we could get other states beginning to question, “What does this look like in your state? What are the tools and resources and finances that you need? Where is the political force to push legislators?” Pat believes, “This is where we need to go and we need to go there quickly, building our soil health.”
This conversation between two lifelong organic advocates gives us the tools and lays out the ways in which people can work together toward a regenerative future. The excitement coming from this work and the support from governments, institutions, brands, businesses, farmers and the citizens of the earth can culminate in the creation of regenerative agriculture becoming the primary means of food production.
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