What is Sustainable Agriculture?
Farming began as a simple enough occupation meant to provide food for one’s own family, people in the local community, and the animals that worked the land. Farmers toiled day and night throughout each and every season prepping and working the ground that fed them. This meant that the seasonal produce families and farm animals ate was always fresh, local, and rich in nutrients.
Somewhere along the way, however, farmers traded in their manual tools for high powered machines, and the few livestock they owned for factory-farmed animals that took an incredible amount of environmental resources just to raise.
So now, nearly 12,000 years later, a farmer’s life looks very different than what it once did and the food grown on farms, shipped around the world, and eaten at the family dinner table certainly looks different too.
Of course, all of these changes meant that food could travel to all corners of the globe quicker and cheaper than ever before. However, over time, people began to realize that quick and cheap didn’t necessarily mean better.
It was then that sustainable agriculture began to see a significant rise in popularity as people began to realize that they wanted to eat fresh, local, and nutrient-dense foods like their ancestors before them had done.
Sustainable agriculture is the practice of producing plants, animals, and textiles in a very intentional way so that it is economically profitable but doesn’t waste important resources or harm the environment for future generations.
And there are many advantages of sustainable agriculture that all people can appreciate.
Advantages of Sustainable Agriculture
Here are 15 advantages of sustainable agriculture that benefit people from around the world and those that come after them:
- More environmentally friendly
- Reduces carbon emissions
- Uses resources more efficiently
- Promotes soil health
- Minimizes water usage
- Produces fewer greenhouse gases
- Decreases waste
- Can also be economically profitable
- Provides local, nutrient-dense foods
- Encourages eating in season
- Minimizes soil erosion
- Improves biodiversity
- Ensures better treatment of animals
- Relies on more organic practices
- Reduces cost of food production
While these are only some of the advantages of sustainable agriculture, it’s easy to see just how much of an impact switching to sustainable agriculture can make on the environment and the people living in it.
Sustainable Agriculture Practices
There are many different types of sustainable agriculture practices such as rotating crops, planting cover crops, using reduced or no-till farming methods, and selling products directly to local consumers.
So businesses in the sustainable agriculture industry have a lot of varied techniques at their disposal.
Perhaps the most surprising fact is that sustainable agriculture practices can be implemented anywhere in the world—from tropical even to arid climates.
Take Verticroft Holdings, for example. If you’re not yet familiar with them, Verticroft Holdings is a holding company with a focus on food security and sustainable agriculture in the Middle East.
With a fully sustainable business model, they were the first company in the GCC to produce organic, grass-fed lamb in the dessert, reducing imports, decreasing the carbon emissions typically associated with raising lamb and shipping it, and created a local supply of meat for important family and religious celebrations.
Plus, they’re able to produce fresh green feed for the sheep and lambs they raise all year long which means they no longer have to rely on other countries to provide the majority of their feed.
By implementing sustainable agriculture practices, companies like Veritcroft Holdings become innovators in the most unlikely of places. And they’re able to provide local citizens with traceable and ethically raised food that contributes to society without leaving environmental damage for future generations to worry about.