“We were placed here as stewards, not as masters.” These are the words of our passionate Founder and Chair of Nature’s Path, Arran Stephens, who learned a valuable lesson from his father while growing up on a farm: Leave the Earth better than you found it.
These words now drive Nature’s Path’s next big endeavour with Legend Organic Farm—our first trial run of an innovative method of farming called regenerative organic farming.
“Regenerative organic farming is nothing new,” says Arran. “It’s been around for thousands of years. It’s been rediscovered in modern times, by the Rodale Institute—actually coined the word regenerative organic farming. What organic farming is really about is building up soil. We need to take care of it .”
Dag Falck, the Organic Program Manager for Nature’s Path, emphasizes how soil health affects us all. “We have a growing population and we have people to feed for many, many generations to come. And they have to have this resource of soil to rely on. So we cannot squander it.”
Regenerative organic farming focuses on restoring soil to its richest and healthiest state, thus helping pull carbon out of the atmosphere and back into the soil. And at the same time, it protects animals and treats farmers and workers fairly. It’s not a radical concept—it’s the next necessary step for our planet.
“How is regenerative organic farming different from organic farming?” asks Stuart McMillan, Farm Manager of Legend Organic Farm. “Well, Nature’s Path and this farm have always been committed to the highest level of organic possible. Regenerative Organic Farming really embraces that. You go further when it comes to preserving and promoting biodiversity. You go further in protecting and maintaining your soil quality. But at its core, it does tie back into the basic principles of organic agriculture.”
And this is where organic plays a most crucial role in building soil health, in producing clean, nutritious food, and in changing the course of climate change. “We really believe that regenerative agriculture needs to start with organic as the foundation,” says Dag. “The way that we farm is the foundation of how we have to treat the soil and build fertility and leave the Earth better for future generations. And by adding regenerative to it, we can only improve on what’s already a good practice.”
We’re grateful for the team we have to support this trailblazing process, and grateful for your support as you follow along in our progress.