American Farmland Trust and partner organizations are receiving a $30 million USDA Partnerships for Climate-Smart Products grant to lead an effort to move the US beef supply chain to carbon neutrality. The eight-state project will amplify the production of climate-smart beef by expanding market drivers, local support networks and early adopter mentors, while providing technical assistance for the adoption of climate-smart grazing practices to significantly reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions and increase carbon. sequestration.
“This effort is critical to transitioning the U.S. beef supply chain to a more environmentally responsible chain,” said Beth Sauerhaft, AFT’s vice president of programs. “Beyond this, we will help farmers protect their land through permanent easements to ensure that the soil health and climate benefits of these practices continue long into the future.”
The project will help produce climate-smart beef for all levels of the market – from direct sales through local farmers’ markets to regional distribution channels to national and global consumer-facing food companies. The project team will hire and train more than 50 mentor producers, transition more than 750 beef producers, map and augment soil function on approximately 600,000 acres, and permanently protect at least 3,000 to 4,500 acres of agricultural land under threat.
“We are excited about the level of impact we will be able to achieve with this project,” said Bianca Moebius-Clune, AFT Climate Initiative Director and Principal Investigator. “We expect to be able to sequester at least 1-5 million tonnes of CO2e over the 5-year project, but more importantly, we anticipate self-sustaining and accelerated expansion of climate-smart systems adoption and opportunities for climate-smart marketing tools verified, stable and widely available beyond. the end of USDA funding.
AFT and its partners will provide a range of virtual and in-person outreach and training. It will also help interested landowners and local land trusts explore farmland protection options that directly support the adoption of climate-smart systems.
In addition to AFT, project partners include The Integrity Beef Alliance, Indigo Agriculture, Earth Optics, Freedman Heirs Foundation, AgriWebb, Regenified, OpenTEAM, US Biochar Initiative, and numerous regional and community partners.
“The Integrity Beef Alliance is thrilled to have received funding from the USDA enabling the alliance and our partners to aggressively move forward on the groundbreaking Legacy Beef program, which benefits producers , consumers and our planet,” said Meredith Ellis, Integrity Beef Alliance Board Member and Producer Member.
“The USDA grant is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate regenerative approaches to the beef cattle industry that are good for the environment, people, animals, and ranch bottom lines. Not only will the Integrity Beef Legacy program facilitate broad market access to higher premiums for climate-smart beef for all farm sizes, but we plan to continue supporting underserved producers after the project period in allocating up to 50% of the Alliance’s net income in the form of grants. to new producers to help offset the costs of regenerative transitions,” added Robert Wells, Executive Director, Integrity Beef Alliance.
“Indigo Ag is excited to partner with ranchers across the country, leveraging our experience in measuring soil carbon to better model the benefits of sustainable grazing practices on the environment,” said AJ Kumar, Vice President, Sustainability Science at Indigo Ag., a collaborative effort backed by rigorous metrics, this project will help unlock new opportunities for climate-smart livestock producers to benefit from the growing demand for low-carbon beef and successfully moving the climate needle.”
“EarthOptics is delighted to work with American Farmland Trust and the other partners,” said Lars Dyrud, CEO of EarthOptics. “With the help of AFT, we will be able to provide their farmers and ranchers with unprecedented quality and the highest resolution carbon mapping available today.”
“The Freedmen Heirs Foundation is thrilled to have received USDA funding with industry partners to identify minority and underserved farmers, initiate pilot programs, and provide training in implementing grazing methods. that will improve soil health and sequester carbon, while promoting climate-neutral beef,” said Seanicaa Edwards Herron, executive director of the Freedmen Heirs Foundation.
“Actionable and accessible data is at the heart of every American beef producer’s ability to operate as profitably, productively and sustainably as possible,” said Kevin Baum, co-founder and CEO of AgriWebb. “The support this grant will provide to climate-smart beef producers, both through mentorship and accessible technology solutions, fuels our industry’s mission to deliver carbon-neutral products and empowers those who do the real work.” the possibility of getting there.
“The US Biochar Initiative looks forward to collaborating to promote the successful integration of climate-smart, sustainably sourced biochar amendments into regenerative grazing and manure management. This AFT-led project will create markets and help the biochar industry grow for permanent carbon removal, which improves nutrient management, soil health, and long-term biological carbon sequestration.” , said Tom Miles, Executive Director of USBI.
“The Open Technology Ecosystem for Agricultural Management (OpenTEAM) and Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment are honored to collaborate with AFT and others in such a rich and growing community dedicated to providing the best agricultural knowledge possible for everyone, regardless of scale, culture or geography,” said Dorn Cox, Research Director, OpenTEAM Community. “We celebrate our work together as an important first step in a larger human enterprise that will support urban and rural economies based on regenerating our working landscapes and the essential shared technology infrastructure needed for transformative change.”
Source: US Farmland Trust, which is solely responsible for the information provided and is fully owned by the source. Informa Business Media and all of its affiliates are not responsible for any content contained in this information asset.