McDonald’s invests in regenerative, sustainable agriculture

No-Till Farming

No-Till Farming

By Catherine Haug, Dec 20, 2017 (image right,  is from Fairfax County .gov (2))

I’ve never been a fan of fast food, and avoid it. But this news about McDonald’s (from a Mercola article (1)), is good news for the planet.

I’ve written before about regenerative agriculture, and how important it is for the planet, not to mention for our personal health. Now McDonald’s wants to get on the regenerative ag bandwagon with a pilot program to assess the ability of its cattle ranchers to sequester carbon in soil by implementing regenerative grazing practices. If this pilot program is a success, it could give a big boost to regenerative agriculture in general.

Read the Mercola article (1) for more about McDonald’s pilot program. And read on for more about what I believe it involves, and its benefits.

To put it simply, this pilot program means raising cattle the way wild buffalo lived prior to their decimation in the 1800s. It involves:

  • Re-introducing native grasses to the ranchers’ pastures;
  • Rotating the cattle from pasture-to-pasture in timely fashion that allows the native grasses to thrive;
  • Such grasses thrive on the natural manure fertilizer provided by the cattle, so that the grasses grow deep roots to sequester carbon deep in the soil.
  • Hopefully it also means the cattle will also be “finished” in pasture until slaughter (instead of being “finished” in feed lots that contribute significantly to the greenhouse effect that leads to climate change).
  • Pasture-finished beef is far more healthful that feed-lot beef, while sequestering a significant amount of carbon.
  • Deep-rooted native grasses also decrease soil erosion; today, 96% of soil erosion in North America is caused by non-regenerative food production.

Image, below, is from from Marin Carbon Project (3)

Carbon Farming

Check out my earlier articles for more about regenerative agriculture:


  1. Mercola article:
  2. no-till image:
  3. carbon-farming image:

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