Regenerative Agriculture is a system of farming principles and practices that increases biodiversity, enriches soils, improves watersheds, and enhances ecosystem services. It has for better or worse become the new “buzz word” in the discussion around sustainable farming, but actually serves as a useful “umbrella” to incorporate diverse practices. Although we’ve never used the term, Belle Pente has been increasingly incorporating many regenerative practices over the past 20 years:

– a nine-year vineyard floor management system that alternates perennial and annual cover crops with no-till

– fully integrated livestock operation incorporating silvopasture and holistic grazing

– dry farming to conserve scarce groundwater resources

– composting with 100% farm-generated materials

– zero use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic fungicides

– using recycled cooking oil to minimize use of fossil fuels in tractors and other equipment

– maintaining native oak savanna and restoring riparian areas

Since there are no standards nor a certification process for regenerative agriculture, a lot is left to the imagination and creativity of those who wish to embrace the term. But all of the practices generally included within the scope of regenerative agriculture are worthy in their own right and have in the worst case a “do no harm” impact on the world.