“...the care of the earth is our most ancient and most worthy and, after all, our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it, and to foster its renewal, is our only legitimate hope.” – Wendell Berry, “The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays”
It was a soil scientist who reminded me recently of something we self-obsessed humans often forget: We don’t need to worry about saving the planet. The planet will save itself.
Planet Earth will survive in one form or another, no matter what damage we humans inflict on it. The question is, will we survive with it?
Or will we destroy Earth’s ability to sustain life, all life, as we know it?
We had that conversation sitting around a table in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where about 100 people from 22 countries gathered in September for the second Regeneration International (RI) General Assembly. We were there to evaluate what the group had accomplished since our last gathering in June 2015, when we launched RI, and what we wanted—and needed—to do next.
We came from different organizations, different countries, different backgrounds. We were scientists, farmers, activists, business leaders, policy wonks, writers.
Our concerns ranged from environmental pollution, health, food safety and food sovereignty to economic and social justice, the global refugee crisis and global warming.
We had come together to renew our commitment to the one movement that we believe has the power to address all our individual and collective concerns, the movement that holds the most hope for resolving the multiple and deepening global crises of hunger, poverty, crumbling political systems and climate change.
The Regeneration Movement. The movement that begins with healing our most critical resources—soil, water, air—through better farming and land management practices. And ends with healing our local communities and global societies.
Read 'Let’s Make 2018 the Year We Rise Up and Regenerate!'
Become a Citizen Regeneration Lobbyist
What better way to start the new year than by focusing on renewal and regeneration—in this case, the regeneration of America’s struggling rural economies through support for organic food and farmers.
The stark reality is this: The rural communities that the vast majority of us depend on to grow our food suffer some of the highest poverty rates in the U.S.
The nonprofit Feeding America reports that 75 percent of U.S. counties with the highest rates of food insecurity are in rural areas. And 86 percent of the counties with the highest rates of child food insecurity are rural.
The statistics for rural farmers are even more bleak. A 2016 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that people working in agriculture—farmers, farm laborers, ranchers, fishers, and lumber harvesters—commit suicide at a rate higher than any other occupation.
How do we turn these numbers around? How do we provide hope for rural farmers and communities?
One way is to take our farming system back from corporate agribusiness and return it to local farmers—by providing assistance and incentives to help those farmers transition to regenerative organic farming methods and build local and regional food hubs.
TAKE ACTION: Ask your member of Congress to help regenerate rural economies by co-sponsoring H.R. 4671, the Organic Farmers Access Act.
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Help us support Regeneration International with a tax-deductible donation
The folks at Bigelow tea aren’t too happy that we’re suing the company for calling its glyphosate-contaminated tea “natural.”
They’re also not happy that you’re calling them, emailing them and posting on social media about the Roundup® weedkiller in their tea. (Thank you, by the way, for doing that).
So Bigelow put out a statement. We responded.
Bigelow is cashing in on the exploding market for “Natural” and “All Natural” foods by using those words on product packaging—even though the company knows its tea contains glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup® weedkiller.
The company also knows that consumers—at least 55 percent of them—will pay more for a product sold by a company that claims to be “socially responsible.”
Here’s what we know. Any company that knowingly sells glyphosate-contaminated products is not environmentally friendly or “socially responsible.” And its products aren’t “all natural.”
Read our response to Bigelow’s statement
Read Bloomberg’s coverage of our lawsuit
Read EcoWatch’s coverage of our lawsuit
Post on Bigelow’s Facebook page
Call Bigelow: 1-888-BIGELOW (1-888-244-3569)
Click to here to tweet Bigelow
Text TEA to 97779 to sign the petition
TAKE ACTION: Tell Bigelow: There’s Nothing ‘Natural’ about Monsanto’s Roundup® Weedkiller in My Tea
“Thanks for your diligent attention to all the threats to our health and that of the planet. You are a ray of hope in this crazed world.” - Sharon in Shoreview, Minnesota
One of the most pleasant aspects of our year-end fundraising—or fundraising anytime of the year—is hearing from you, our supporters.
We really appreciate comments like the one above, from Sharon. We love being seen as a “ray of hope.”
But truth be told, our lives are brightened every day by the many rays of hope that shine down on us from all of you. You don't just make our work possible. You make it so worthwhile.
Thanks once again to your generosity, we reached our year-end fundraising goal.
Now we look forward to another year of standing up to the forces that degenerate our health and environment, and promoting and supporting those intent on regenerating not only our health and environment, but also our local economies and democracies.
From all of us at OCA, thank you. Here’s to a regenerative, organic 2018!
Make a tax-deductible donation to the Organic Consumers Association
Make a tax-deductible donation to OCA's Millions Against Monsanto Campaign
Support OCA's grassroots lobbying efforts (donations to our 501(c) 4 lobbying arm are not deductible)
Leather is an agricultural product. We often forget that.
Leather is also a product that went from being highly localized and utilitarian—we made shoes to cover our feet—to highly industrialized. Most consumers no longer think about where the leather in their shoes or bags or car seats or furniture came from, much less what impact the production of that product had on the land or animals.
But as this video from the Savory Institute reminds us, everything we do—and everything we buy—has an origin and an impact. As consumers, we can make choices that minimize the exploitation of our land, animals and people.
What do you know about where the leather in your shoes or couch came from? How can you find out more?
Watch ‘The Story of Leather’
We’re only beginning to learn the importance of healthy gut bacteria to our overall health—and the relationship between healthy soil and the human microbiome.
Now a new study shows that Monsanto’s Roundup® weedkiller, which we already know damages healthy soil microbial activity, also damages the gut microbiome of rats.
The study, published by Prof Gilles-Eric Séralini at the University of Caen, France, raises new alarms about glyphosate, the most widely used herbicide in the world despite mountains of research pointing to the weedkiller’s damaging impacts on human and environmental health.
According to an article published this month by Mercola.com, 70 to 80 percent of your immune function resides within your gastrointestinal tract, or “gut.” Poor gut health is associated with autism, behavioral disorders, diabetes, gene expression and obesity.
If, as this recent article in the Atlantic claims, “The microbial community in the ground is as important as the one in our guts,” then the new Séralini study doesn’t bode well for us humans—especially if we keep dousing the world’s soils with glyphosate, and consuming glyphosate-contaminated foods.
Read ‘Roundup Causes Major Changes in Gut Microbiome of Rats’
Read the full study
Canola Oil Proven to Destroy Your Body and MindHow a Fast Food Worker Became an ActivistAs Diet-Related Illnesses Surge, a New Kind of Pharmacy Dispenses Fruit and Vegetables'Big Milk' Brings Big Issues for Local CommunitiesThis Military Explosive Is Poisoning American SoilChemicals in America Are Woefully Unregulated