Growing food — Respectfully and Abundantly

Healthy soils are alive

Most crucial parameter for any farmer is the medium in which she intends to grow healthy crops — soil. Rich soil is home to billions of life forms that work in their intricate networks to keep the soil alive and healthy . While some life forms help the human goal of maximizing yield, others, on first glance, might hamper it. Our goal, like with anything, should be to reach the natural equilibrium; realizing that every organism has a role to play. Without this life, soil is nothing more than desert sand— devoid of nutrients.

Water abundance equals food abundance

Over time, conventional agriculture has continually depleted our aquifers and simultaneously our respect for the crucial resource. Places where once water could be found at 30 feet under ground, just in few decades, have gone dry till hundreds, in some cases, thousands of feet. The goal in any sustainable agriculture operation should be to remain net water-neutral.

Natural ecosystems are bio-diverse

While conventional farming is synonymous with mono-cropping, sustainable farming stands firmly on multi-cropping. A diverse system comprising of evergreen trees, shrubs, vines, native grass, and annuals provides a constant food source in the form of vegetables, fruits, medicinal herbs, grains, lentils and spices. This cropping pattern has three major benefits:

Sustainability includes profitability

For anything to be sustainable, it also should be profitable. Driven by simple economics there are two aspects to it:

People drive and sustain change

While the theory has existed for a while and is also operationalized in pockets, widespread adoption has remained lacking and a key success factor for that is engagement with different stakeholders.

In conclusion

While sustainable farming practices have been conceptualized recently, it has existed for a while and was practiced by many indigenous cultures implicitly long before the advent of modern, chemical-intensive agriculture. Combination of this ancient wisdom with modern technology and effective business practices will form the basis of next farming revolution — the one where our farms are unique ecosystems alive with diverse lifeforms and places of equity laden with abundance. With the right intention, respect and gratitude, the time is ripe for us to collectively embark on the journey of sustainable agriculture to restore the natural balance.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Saurabh Maheshwari

Saurabh Maheshwari

2 Followers

A strategy consultant turned organic farmer developing a profitable business model centered on sustainable and holistic agriculture