We fund on-the-ground projects that build and support new and existing communities of regenerative farmers. These projects contribute to the broader food systems across California and the Midwest by strengthening regional connections and supporting farmers who are actively and creatively participating in their local food sheds.
Orella Ranch aims to demonstrate the ecological outcomes of multi-species grazing in California with the implementation of pollinator hedgerows, rangeland planting, tree/shrub establishment and compost application on 13 acres of rangeland. Orella Ranch seeks to create a space to show the impacts of holistically managed landscapes, as there are few examples of silvopasture projects being done in the region. They have been nominated as a silvopasture producer as part of a statewide initiative funded by the USDA National Agroforestry Center. They have partnered with the Community Environmental Council in Santa Barbara County to help organize and fund field days to share their successes and challenges, as well as Santa Barbara City College (SBCC) and University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB) to bring students on site.
Organic Compound is a 40-acre homestead, regeneratively managed by Wil and Carly Crombie, that focuses on land stewardship, creativity, and community building. OC is part of Regeneration farms, a food business and network of farmers raising Tree-Range™ Chicken in agroforestry systems of hazelnuts and elderberries. OC, in partnership with the Regenerative Agriculture Alliance, is looking to establish a shared-use commercial kitchen and regenerative food processing facility to be used by perennial producers in the Northfield area of Minnesota for a thriving local and perennial foodshed. In order to facilitate the growth of perennial industries, the project will support elderberry and hazelnut processing by purchasing the necessary equipment to efficiently facilitate the destemming, husking, and packaging process. By building infrastructure and increasing on-farm processing capacity of regeneratively grown foods, OC will expand this region’s elderberry and hazelnut production allowing more producers to confidently pursue these crops and engage in perennial farming. OC believes that one of the keys to building a successful and thriving local regenerative food system is the ability to create shelf stable products that allow producers to sell year round, direct to the community, as well as expand to grocers and other markets.
PT Ranch provides pasture-raised regenerative meats, as well as lavender, honey, and olive oil in Ione, CA. To address the issue of food insecurity experienced disproportionately by Amador County’s BIPOC and Miwok Native populations, PT Ranch aims to donate nutrient-dense, regenerative food to local chefs to prepare and distribute to underserved communities across the county. PT Ranch will also host educational workshops and cooking classes, providing food and supplies while teaching the skills necessary for local residents to affordably source and cook nourishing, regenerative meals at home.
Cuyama Lamb is is a sheep outfit committed to the regeneration of native California grasslands and the sustainable production of ethically raised food & fiber on the coastal foothills of Santa Barbara County. Their livestock manage public spaces, reduce fire fuels around neighborhoods, and create a resilient, local food source. Their project aims to support a local destination for regeneratively produced wool from Central and Southern California that fosters collaboration with the local indigenous artisan traditions that exist in their region. Porfirio Gutiérrez is a California-based Zapotec textile artist revitalizing and preserving traditional natural dyeing and weaving techniques. Together, they wish to create a collaboration in which the wool produced from Cuyama Lamb sheep is turned into blankets and ponchos. This project will invest in the capacity of a local indigenous artist to utilize locally sourced materials. This initial investment will grow his capacity to utilize wool from Cuyama Lamb and other like-minded producers in the region, increasing the possibility of regeneratively raised sheep wool to become part of a thriving local economy. By creating high value products with wool, we decrease the economic pressure on meat sales, making it more viable to sell lamb meat at affordable prices. All of this increases the resiliency of local lamb producers, who in diversifying income streams, are better able to respond and adapt to changes in market and climate conditions. Over the past 50 years, there has been such strong market pressures that favor synthetics materials over natural fibers. When we create interest in and appreciation for natural fibers, we participate in shifting customer interest in and demand for natural fibers.
Table Bluff Farm is a first-generation, woman-owned, 2-acre regenerative micro farm just outside Loleta, CA, nestled between the mouth of the Eel River, the Pacific Ocean, and the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The farm serves 60 households and partners with 17 local vendors through a barrier-free, pay-as-you-go CSA in the middle of a food desert. The goal of this project is to create a permanent local food hub that offers regeneratively grown, produce, cut flowers, and pastured eggs and meats in a fixed location for the rural community to access fresh food reliably throughout the week. In addition to growing their own food, Table Bluff serves as an incubator to promote social and environmental justice, supporting hyper-local, woman-, BIPOC-, and LGBTQIA-owned businesses. The stand offers bread, jam, sourdough brownies, soaps, and other value-added products from local makers, growers, bakers, and artisans.
McGrath Family Farmers (MFF) is an intergenerational collective of five (5) diverse farming organizations united in the regenerative management of 31 organic acres of vegetable and fruit crops on California’s Oxnard Plain. With the installment of a mechanized compost turner, the project will increase the amount of “waste” material collected from the fields and fellow agriculturalists, and transform this waste into a valuable, soil-building resource. This project will leverage existing infrastructural support of the MFF Collective as well as the mechanized turner to produce enough compost to sustain 100 acres of regeneratively managed land in the coming years.
Avenue 33 Farm is a regenerative urban farm in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA operated by Eric Tomassini and Alison Greer. Since 2018, they have been focusing on building healthy soil on their steep city hillsides and producing the highest quality vegetables and flowers. They are building a multistrata agroforestry system and food forest to serve their community and provide a model for integrating agriculture into suburban and peri-urban neighborhoods. The goal of their project is to provide a gathering space to show regenerative farming in action, host hands-on classes, produce the amendments necessary to have healthy soil biology along with healthy plant starts, and provide the education necessary to give people a solid understanding and confidence in regenerative practices. By showing food scraps being turned into a biological amendment through a flowthrough worm bin, they will show exactly how to increase biological activity in soil and reduce waste. Through their partnership with Los Angeles Leadership Academy (LALA), Eric has been working with the faculty and students to develop a free weekly produce distribution in Lincoln Heights, a farm based after school program, and curriculum to incorporate hands-on experience at LALA Farm into their coursework.