By Ryan Daly
“As a commerce company, Shopify champions entrepreneurs around the world, and we want to make entrepreneurship accessible for anyone everywhere,” says Stacy Kauk, Director of Shopify’s Sustainability Fund. “If we want entrepreneurship to be prolific over the long-term, over the next hundred years, we have to future-proof our business. We need to make sure we’re addressing the threats to entrepreneurship.” Climate change, Kauk says, is one of those big threats.
Today’s consumers are asking more and more: how, and at what cost to the environment, does food reach my table?
By Ryan Stockwell, Partner & Grower Advocacy
Ryan Stockwell is a Wisconsin farmer who helps farmers solve problems on their farms with Carbon by Indigo.
I’ll admit, when I first heard of the idea of using no till in the land of the frozen tundra (that’s a lot of cold and a lot of water), my knee jerk reaction was, “That’s for out west where they don’t get enough rain.” But as I thought about what soil health focused farmers and leading experts were saying, it started to make sense.
Even though Ryan Heiniger hasn’t always been farming, he’s always stayed close to the management of land, its resources, and safeguarding the wildlife who inhabit it. The majority of the wildlife biologist’s career was spent with two upland and wetland conservation non-profits: Ducks Unlimited for the first fifteen years and Pheasants Forever for the next eight. In his former roles, Heiniger worked to demonstrate how profitable production agriculture and land conservation can occur simultaneously by utilizing the right land management practices that can improve soil health, wildlife habitats, and water quality, all while making the producer more money.
Each year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) designates World Food Day on October 16th to bring awareness to the transformations in food systems, agriculture, and nutrition. On Tuesday, we also celebrated National Farmers Day. What better time of year than harvest to champion the farmers who keep us fed, clothed, and fueled.
Corn and soybean harvest is here, a hectic two-month stretch for both farmers and merchants. This season has us reflecting on how merchandising work has changed over the past few years and how we hope it stays the same going forward. In this editorial series, we look at how technology has made the process of originating, procuring, and hedging grain more efficient – and what we plan to do with all of the time we’ve gotten back.
The demand for agricultural carbon credits is growing. Hundreds of Fortune 500 businesses are making commitments to purchase them in order to further their environmental impact goals. On the one hand, these companies are working to reduce their own carbon emissions. On the other, they’re purchasing credits to offset the emissions they can’t eliminate. But these buyers aren’t just looking for any carbon credit, they want quality—they want to know the credits they’re purchasing are leading to real environmental impact.
Carbon farming is the process of changing agricultural practices to increase the levels of carbon in the soil and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This type of regenerative agriculture prioritizes soil health.
Simply put, it’s farmers implementing agronomic practices that solve challenges while increasing carbon in the soil or decreasing emissions. By adding these practices to your operation, you can earn carbon credits through carbon programs. Businesses will buy those credits to offset the emissions they can’t reduce, which means you get paid for implementing those practice changes. That is carbon farming—growing your existing crops with new practices to create new revenue that benefits the environment and your operation.
The agricultural carbon marketplace is emerging. The buyers are all in, making commitments to available carbon credit and trying to find more. Their interest in credits is part of their larger strategy to reduce their own emissions and offset the ones they can’t reduce. On the carbon credit supply side, the marketplace is increasing credit production to meet this growing demand. The early adopters have charted the way. Now, more farmers are entering the carbon market.
The science of agricultural production matters a lot when only a handful of ingredients make up your food or drink. Think coffee, which is just one ingredient. Or beer. The most recognizable lager in America, Bud, is brewed today with just four ingredients: rice, barley, hops, and water. Kimberly Rogowski has spent the last 15 years finding and buying those ingredients for Bud and other beers in the Anheuser-Busch portfolio, including Budweiser, Bud Light, and Michelob ULTRA. She’s now the director of the brewer’s agronomy program. Rogowski knows how fewer ingredients makes the quality of each of those ingredients more important. That’s why she and her 14-person agronomy department start their work focusing on the soil.