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Farming healthy soils

This regenerative organic farming project is helping to improve soil carbon stocks on UK farms
Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod
Cross-section of soil and grass with a spade

This article first appeared in our World Environment Day issue of My Green Pod Magazine, published 05 June 2024. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox

Decades of industrial farming have taken their toll on our planet, and Yeo Valley Organic believes that the solution lies beneath our feet – in our soils.

Soil: our natural ally

All life on Earth starts with soil, which helps to grow 95% of our food.

Regenerative organic farming helps to build healthy soil – which Yeo Valley Organic believes is one of the most effective ways to fight climate change while providing people with healthy, nutritious food.

Regenerative approaches, while unique to every farm, share a common endpoint of benefiting the entire ecosystem and its processes.

‘As farmers and custodians of the soil, it’s time to recognise that our natural ally is right under our feet’, said Yeo Valley Organic’s Tim Mead. ‘We believe that when the farming system is truly ‘regenerating’ and putting nature first, it is good for all: the animals, people and planet.’

Carbon in UK farmland

Yeo Valley Organic is using education and research to grow the UK’s regenerative organic farming movement.

The family farm has been working with expert partners and farmer-led social enterprise the Farm Carbon Toolkit (FCT) to help more of Britain’s organic farmers to understand the real impact of soil carbon stocks on their own farms, plus their supplying farms, and how improving soil health can mitigate climate change.

The project started back in 2021 by analysing current soil carbon stocks and soil health to understand the conditions of each field on the farms.

The objective is to deliver improvements to soil health and carbon storage over five years by working collaboratively to change processes.

Supporting carbon sequestration

The FCT has led the practical soil measuring of Yeo Valley Organic’s supplying farms and has been engaging farmers about the health of their soils, offering practical support and mentoring on how they can better support their soil health, productivity and carbon sequestration.

As an organic brand for over 25 years, Yeo Valley Organic is used to working in harmony with nature.

The family farm’s organic dairy farmers support the whole food system – including the soils, animals and biodiversity – and ensure that, as far as possible, they are working together in a way that has a positive impact on the British countryside.

They are excited to continue working on this soil carbon project over the coming years.

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