In a major step forward for regenerative farming, the Calm the Farm website was launched on 10 March. The website aims to support the transition to regenerative agriculture in New Zealand. Regenerative farming is the most direct way to restore water quality. It also sequesters carbon and supports direct cooling of the land, improves food quality and increases ecosystem health and diversity.
Calm the Farm is an initiative of Mike Taitoko, Nathalie Whitaker and Shaun Hendy, the leaders of Toha, an environmental impact investment organisation.
Figure one: Mike Taitoko, Nathalie Whitaker and Shaun Hendy of Toha
Regenerative farmers focus on soil health as the foundation for plant, animal and human health. For decades various types of regenerative farmer, including organic, bio dynamic and tikanga Māori have struggled in relative isolation and the indifference and occasional hostility of agribusiness. Indebtedness locks many farmers into methods that are increasingly unsustainable.
This is where Calm the Farm comes in. Their knowledge networks provide farmers with extension services and learning processes to optimise regenerative practices and provide investment funds that support the transition from conventional farming. In addition to regenerating the soil, Calm the Farm want to regenerate farmer’s bank accounts.