Regenerative Agriculture

Over the last few years, the term “Regenerative Agriculture” has become more widely recognised, but with little clarity of what it actually defines. We at Oakbank believe Regenerative Agriculture is a system-based approach following a set of principles, which aims to work with nature to improve soil health, increase biodiversity and enhance ecosystem services. To “regenerate” suggests improving a place or system, making it more active or successful, which is what we are trying to achieve with Regenerative Agriculture. However, it is important that the success of this system is measured holistically with the wider ecosystem, rather than simply through performance indicators such as yield. Regenerative Agriculture is non-prescriptive, allowing farmers to approach it in a manner of different ways depending on their context. This encourages innovation and improvements in our social, economic and environmental actions.   

The Core Principles of Regenerative Agriculture:

  • Understand the context

  • Minimise soil disturbance

  • Maintain soil surface cover

  • Maintain living roots

  • Increase species diversity

  • Incorporate livestock where possible

1 Understand The Context

2 Minimise Soil Disturbance

3 Maintain soil surface cover

4 Maintain living roots

5 Increase Species Diversity

6 Incorporate Livestock

Although there are a lot of farmers in the UK doing this well, they are certainly the minority as opposed to the majority. Growers are clearly facing an ever-increasing list of pressures and challenges, including the increased frequency of extreme weather events, the removal of BPS and the soaring inflation of agricultural inputs seen in 2021. This highlights the importance of increasing overall farm resilience, whether that is through improving soil health or reducing the reliance on heavy chemical and fertiliser applications. If implemented correctly, Regenerative Agriculture has the potential to deliver an array of ecosystem benefits. These include increased biodiversity, carbon sequestration, improved soil health, reduced input requirement, improved local air/water quality – the list goes on!

How can Oakbank help?

At Oakbank, Ian Gould has taken the lead in understanding Regenerative Agriculture, and in particular how we can assist growers to use plants to improve their soils and transition to a more sustainable system. Oakbank is actively involved with this increasingly important market, including substantial trials with Sky Agriculture, Opico and Indigro. An example of this ongoing work we are doing with Indigro surrounding Living Mulches in an Arable Rotation

Regenerative Agriculture really is a huge topic, and we would be delighted to help you with your project whatever your starting point. We can supply a complete service for cover and companion cropping, which we have been developing for the last 5 years. If you have an interest in cover and companion cropping, please give us a call and we will be pleased to offer whatever advice you need. We can also add you to our Cover Crop group so that you are advised of any relevant events that are happening.

We offer a complete range of species to meet your cover cropping needs, which we are able to offer in straights, standard mixes, or we are happy to assist in creating a bespoke mixture to suit your particular requirement. See our Cover Crop products page to find out more about the products we offer

Resources

We understand the scale of the topic and the fact that there is fast becoming and overwhelming realm of less reliable information out there. If you are new to this topic, there is no better reference than the excellent book by American farmer and rancher Gabe Brown, “Dirt to Soil, One Family’s Journey Into Regenerative Agriculture”. There is also plenty of other good reading resources which can be found on our Suggested Reading page.

There are some excellent UK based farmers that are also adopting these principles and we would encourage you to become members of BASE-UK to learn from and share experiences. (https://base-uk.co.uk/)

We have also produced a range of online webinars with the likes of Joel Williams, Dr. Christine Jones and Nicole Masters which can be viewed.

  • Oakbank Game (@OakbankGame)

    RT @TomOlivant1: Bit of a longshot...myself and @meggpx (+well behaved dog) are looking to rent a property in the surrounding area of St. N…

    Read more

  • Oakbank Game (@OakbankGame)

    RT @Wensumfarmers: It’s not all about the landscape… “My family and I have farmed here since 1957 and only now, through joining the @Wensu

    Read more

  • Oakbank Game (@OakbankGame)

    RT @KateESmith11: Really interesting to learn that oversowing corn in North Dakota with oil radish, had no negative impacts on yields and g…

    Read more

  • Oakbank Game (@OakbankGame)

    Robust science backs up what all of those of us that work in this sector see every day! gwct.org.uk/blogs/news/202…

    Read more

  • Oakbank Game (@OakbankGame)

    RT @TrooperSnooks: Note for the diary. The @Gameandwildlife East Anglian Grey Partridge farm walk will be held at Flea Barn on the evening…

    Read more

Sign Up for our E-Newsletter



    BY APPOINTMENT TO
    HER MAJESTY THE QUEEN
    CONSERVATION SEED SUPPLIER
    OAKBANK GAME & CONSERVATION LTD

    © 2022 Oakbank. All Rights Reserved