Is it inevitable that simply by feeding and clothing ourselves, we are contributing to environmental degradation and climate change? The thought-leaders behind the companies and brands featured below don’t think so. They are boldly bringing to the market products that are regenerative, meaning that the very process of their production helps to regenerate soils and therefore stabilize global climate.
Whether it’s through
- managed grazing on pastures and grasslands that stimulates root growth…
- or integrating crop and animal systems on the farms where they source their raw materials…
- or fair supply networks that regenerate local economies as well as growing practices that regenerate ecosystems…
- or sourcing specifically from perennial (as opposed to annual) plants, which don’t require frequent tilling and can send down massive, carbon-storing root systems into the soil…
…these companies are doing it differently, and showing that you can, too.
Here you go: 10 climate-beneficial products for the intrepid Regenerative Consumer!
1. Maple Hill Creamery dairy products
Maple Hill Creamery in upstate New York sources its milk from over seventy small family farms that are all committed to organic, 100% grass-fed practices. They have a mission beyond producing yogurt, kefir, raw milk cheeses and fresh mozzarella: to develop a truly regenerative dairy farming system. Find it here
2. Nova Chocolate
Nova Chocolate is one of those pioneering chocolate companies that not only works directly with cacao farmers, ensuring a transparent supply network, but is also committed to regenerative growing practices. Cacao is a great “carbon-sequestering superstar” plant because it grows well in shade, and can be grown under a tree canopy of other plants in a dense agroforestry system. The Yellow Seed site allows you to track chocolate products back to their origin: for example, Nova’s “Single-origin Ecuador bar” comes from Associación Artesanal Eco-Cacao. Find it here
3. Community Supported Cloth
4. Patagonia Provisions
Patagonia, the clothing company that’s long been a leader in ethical and environmental responsibility, is now setting the same high standard for the food industry. Patagonia Provisions offers a selection of foods that address environmental issues: soup mixes, dry goods and bison jerky — ideal for that hiking trip into the wild — but also gift boxes, including a vegetarian one (if bison jerky is not your thing). Everything is organic, GMO-free, and supports regenerative agriculture and restorative fishing. Find it here
5. Tanka Bar
6. Stone House Grain
Stone House Farm in Hudson Valley, NY, is modeling a viable model of regenerative agriculture, producing grain for animal feed but also for milling. Following the principles of Holistic Management, Stone House uses long-term crop rotations and integrate their grazing animals into the system to rebuild the soil. Find red wheat, rye, buckwheat and corn you can grind into freshly milled flour here.
7. Lani’s Lana wool
Attention knitters and spinners! Lana Estill’s Bare Ranch was the first fiber farm in California to be certified as “Climate-Beneficial” by Fibershed. That means the pastures where the sheep are grazing are managed in such a way that more carbon is stored in the soil. Lani’s Lana offers exquisitely soft yarns and spinning fiber of fine Rambouillet sheep wool. I’m knitting with her Natural White yarn at the moment, so I can attest how wonderful it is! Find it here
8. Long Root Ale by Patagonia Provisions
It’s the world’s first beer made with Kernza®, a perennial grain that can be grown using regenerative agriculture practices. Because Kernza® is a perennial grain, it develops a massive root system and can be grown without tilling the soil, which means that more carbon gets stored in the soil. Read more here
9. Shepherd’s Grain
Shepherd’s Grain provides flour for consumers and the food industry, sourcing all their wheat from 45 growers in southern Alberta and the Pacific Northwest who use no-till, direct-seed growing methods that regenerate the land. Find it here –and if you live in the Pacific Northwest, you can find bakeries, bagel shops, pizzerias and restaurants that use Shepherd’s Grain flour.