Sustainable Agriculture

Key Facts

Sustainable Agriculture:

  • Achieves crop yields within the range of those obtained by chemical-dependent methods.
  • Reduces “external” costs incurred industrial agriculture, where negative impacts on soil, water, air and human health are paid for by governments and taxpayers.

Why It Matters

Sustainable agriculture refers to farming that is rooted in organic, agroecological, biodynamic and/or regenerative practices. This type of farming is based on a whole ecosystem approach that is not focused solely on the individual product —vegetables, meat, eggs etc.— but on investing in a healthy system, which includes the wellbeing of people and animals, community health, ecological health and soil health, among others.

Sustainable agriculture also doesn’t rely on external inputs such as synthetic fertilizer and pesticides, which helps farmers be less reliant on off-farm purchasing. It also makes use of its own outputs—like crop waste and animal manure—through composting the crop waste and applying manure as fertilizer on fields. In this way it is a closed-loop cycle that builds soil health, clean water systems and biodiversity rather than depleting them.

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