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Regenerating Hope {Week 4 CSA}

If the word sustainability keeps up with its current growth it will replace every word in the English dictionary. That should encourage and alarm us.

With sustainable plastics, sustainable cars, sustainable energy, sustainable roads, sustainable clothing, sustainable building, and sustainable goods flown across the world for our consumptive habits, the exploitation and dilution of its meaning is both ironic and poignant. But it also highlights a promising trajectory: people care and they want a different course.

I had the opportunity to visit some regenerative farms this offseason and listen to some of the thought leaders in regenerative agriculture, and they made a clear distinction between what is regenerative and what is sustainable. Sustainable means we keep up what we are doing, not letting it get worse, but not looking too hard at our actions so we can continue to sustain the economy. Regenerative is leaving things better than how we find them. Industry leaders will continue to drive consumption with targeted labels, making us feel good about our purchases. Regenerative will be lost, like organic is lost, like sustainable is lost and the only way we have through the mess is by getting to know the people growing our food and, most importantly, how they are growing our food.

This time in history will be a short transition between polarities: we will go from mega-farms relying on inputs imported across the globe to small and medium-sized farms developing food sheds, to nomadic wild beings remembering nature. The USDA just announced their “Framework for Shoring Up the Food Supply Chain and Transforming the Food System to Be Fairer, More Competitive, More Resilient.” Written in this framework is funding for small-to-medium-sized producers and local food system development. We can only hope their rhetoric will be supported by truly widespread action and not siphoned by the wolves in small-farm clothing. With so much rapid change afoot, we're consciously replacing our cynicism of Big Ag and the USDA with the hope that smaller farms regain prominence and provide localized food sovereignty.

The part we play in creating a model focused heavily on regenerating the soil while also keeping it highly productive (two roads that don’t often intersect) is a small but important one. Our farm is our school, our constant teacher of humbling lessons and better ways. We do our best to bring in as few external inputs as possible and farm in a way that continues to increase the health of the soil measured with our devoted senses and regular soil analyses. In truth, I believe the only true form of regenerative agriculture looks more like living in the woods and speaking to the animals, reconnecting to the natural world in ways that sound dreamy and unrealistic today. But little by little, through regeneration we are slowly pulling the bow back to launch future generations into days of true sustainability, even if through devastation from our extractive era.

We must not forget how important our daily choices are in this world of convenient options. We hold the power as consumers to shape this world because we are the force behind the machine and are more powerful than we can imagine.

Zach preparing our next planting bed. We keep the plants on top over winter to keep the soil covered and then rake the tops off when our transplants are ready to go in. We also have some perennials growing, as these are our flower beds. We avoid pulling roots where possible, add compost as a mulch and nutrient layer on top, and level it all with a rake for an even bed. Voila!


Inside Your Box This Week

Cherry Tomatoes Rainbow Chard Tokyo Bekana Dino Kale Scallions Spinach Romaine Radishes Curly Kale


Recipes Worth Trying...

{click images to go to recipe}


For supporting our small organic farm.

For helping pave a way forward for regenerative agriculture.

For investing in young farmers.

For buying local.

We're honored to nourish you!


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