World Desertification Day + 5 Brands working to Regenerate the Land

Today is a day I, admittedly, had never heard of until I decided to write a blog exploring how to live a more eco-conscious lifestyle: World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought. While the observance may be new to me, the understanding that improper land management and over-grazing is contributing to carbon emissions and soil degradation is not.

In my past life as a publicist, I worked to secure coverage of a pretty wonderful initiative by Annie’s and its parent company, General Mills. They pledged to “advance regenerative agricultural practices” on 1 million acres of farmland by 2030. As part of this, in 2018 Annie’s released limited-edition Mac & Cheese and Bunny Grahams made with ingredients grown using regenerative agriculture farming practices, as proof of concept. (I was able to secure coverage of the initiative on Fast Company with one of my favorite sustainability writers).

Regenerative agriculture is one method of proper land management, which helps to remove carbon from the atmosphere and store it in the soil where it helps us grow healthy and nutritious food for the planet (yum!). According to the United Nations, restoring the soils of degraded ecosystems has the potential to store up to 3 billion tons of carbon annually. The land use sector represents almost 25% of total global emissions. Its rehabilitation and sustainable management is critical to combating climate change.

One thing we can do to encourage more companies to follow in General Mills’ footsteps? Vote with our dollars! Below are a list of brands committed to implementing more regenerative agriculture practices in their supply chain:

  • Annie’s - One of the first brands to widely adapt organic sourcing is now one of the first to push the industry further by sourcing regeneratively farmed ingredients, which require a more holistic set of practices to help promote soil health, increase biodiversity, and pull carbon from the air

  • EPIC Provisions - A leader in regenerative agriculture, the company is committed to sourcing 100% grass fed bison by the fall of 2021

  • Alter Eco Chocolate - Alter Eco chocolate is boldly working to combat deforestation in the areas where their cocoa beans are sourced through a partnership with Acopagro Coop to implement agroforestry (the planting of trees in farms)

  • Applegate - The natural and organic meat company owned by Hormel Foods recently launched a line of grass-fed pork sausages under The New Food Collective label, which sources pork from small farms using regenerative agricultural practices

  • White Leaf Provisions - Attention moms and soon-to-be moms! This baby food brand was built around a commitment to healing the planet that our children will inherit.