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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

General Mills Announces Plan to Invest in Regenerative Agriculture

Press Release – Oakland, CA—March 6, 2019—Earlier this week, major global food company General Mills announced a new commitment to advance regenerative agriculture on 1 million acres of farmland by 2030. Regenerative agriculture is a holistic farming system which aims to increase biodiversity, enrich soil, improve watersheds, and enhance ecosystems. Regenerative agriculture, applied correctly, can also reduce the use of pesticides through healthier soils, more resilient crops, and rotation of plantings to reduce pests. The first step in General Mills’ initiative will be engaging farmers in training and education on practices which improve soil health, above-ground biodiversity, and farmer economic resilience.

Christy Spees, environmental health program manager of As You Sow, had this to say about General Mills’ announcement:

“We are encouraged by this action because it is an investment in the future of farmland that will ultimately benefit environmental and human health. While this commitment is limited (it currently will focus on only one crop, for a limited number of the company’s brands, some of which already source organically), it is an important step and sets a clear direction for other companies to follow across their full range of agricultural supply chains.

“We note in particular that regenerative agriculture should not be limited to the supply chains for ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ products. All people deserve healthy, pesticide-free foods.”

Danielle Fugere, president of As You Sow, had this to say about General Mills’ announcement:

“Given the enormous impact food systems have on greenhouse gas emissions as well as the toll climate change is expected to take on agriculture, it is crucial that food companies consider the long-term sustainability of the farms on which they rely. Regenerative agriculture promotes not only carbon retention but soil resiliency and health. Healthy soil creates healthy food. If General Mills adopts regenerative agriculture across all of its supply chains, it will be a win for people and planet.”

For more information on As You Sow’s work on environmental health, click here.


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