Help the Planet with Grass-Farmed Meat & Local, Organic Produce!

In honor of Earth Month, I want to talk about the environmental benefits of grass-farmed meat. As I have discussed in other blog posts, grass-fed meats are more nutrient-dense and provide better nutrition for our bodies. However, it is not just us that benefit. It is the environment, too!

Grazing animals are referred to as “on pasture”. This means that they roam the land and eat the grass around them. This has a huge beneficial impact on the environment. A primary benefit is that these animals require less fossil fuel use. When animals are raised in conventional, or confined, farming they are typically fed corn or soy feed (which is not part of their natural diet and they do not digest well). This feed requires resources to grow, harvest and transport. Not to mention the feed is treated with pesticides which are harmful to the animal, soil, and water system.

Animals on pasture also provide a better system for air quality management. When a pasture-based farm is managed properly the animals spread manure throughout the land. This provides natural and organic fertilizer for the soil. The USDA has studied the effects of pasture-raised animals and has found that compared to undisturbed grassland (and of course feedlots), these grazed pastures have a higher amount of carbon stored in the soil. This stored carbon, which occurs when the cows’ hooves naturally till the land, means increased soil fertility and decreased greenhouse gas emission (i.e. slowed global warming). This, ultimately, improves the health of the grass which also helps purify the air.

This is not possible with conventional farming methods where the animal feces and urine build up in the confined living spaces. Because it is not able to air properly, ammonia gas builds up which