A pilot launched by General Mills this week aims to advance the adoption of regenerative agricultural practices and improve overall water quality.
The food company has launched the pilot with famers in Kansas’ Cheney Reservoir watershed, which provides water to more than 400,000 Wichita residents.
The three-year pilot is comprised of twenty-four wheat growers in and around the 650,000-acre watershed where more than 99% of the land is used for agricultural purposes.
“The goal of the pilot program is to encourage farming practices that improve both soil health and water quality in the Cheney Reservoir region such that agriculture is the solution to a more resilient and clean water supply for Wichita residents,” said Leo Henning, Deputy Secretary of the Division of Environment at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
“We believe regenerative agriculture can improve the quality of this vital water source and if we are successful, it’s win-win-win, for farmers, communities and the environment.”
Regenerative agriculture is a holistic method of farming, deploying practices designed to protect and intentionally enhance natural resources and farming communities.
These practices focus on pulling carbon from the air and storing it in the soil in addition to helping the land be more resilient to extreme weather events.
Additionally, regenerative agriculture practices help to increase water infiltration and reduce soil erosion which have been shown to positively impact the quality of nearby lakes, rivers and streams.
The pilot builds on General Mill’s commitment to improve soil health and to reduce its absolute GHG emissions by 28% across its full value chain by 2025.