Nebraska and surrounding states have some of the richest soil in the world. Yet throughout the state, Nebraskans have little access to locally produced food.
RegeNErate Nebraska wants to change that. How? By reclaiming local control of the food system, and removing it from the grip of corporate agribusiness.
“Many people have been left behind as industrial agriculture has replaced cooperation with competition, separating us from our connection to the soil and to each other,” said RegeNErate Nebraska founder and local farmer Graham Christensen. “RegeNErate Nebraska is a community of Nebraskans who are bucking the system, in favor of the solution which lies in the soil. Regeneration is about going back to the way farming was.”
The group, partly inspired by opposition to Costco’s plan to build the largest poultry factory farm in the U.S., in Fremont, Nebraska, aims to grow a community of consumers, local farmers, tribal members and other groups who will collaborate on how to localize control over how food is produced and distributed in Nebraska.
“The solution lies in the soil,” said Christensen. “Everything comes from the soil—all that feeds us, nourishes us, provides us with strength and community. It’s who we are. Nebraskans know that soil is soul.”
The events brought together local and national leaders and members of the community to discuss the benefits of transitioning from a conventional, degenerative agriculture system to a regenerative organic model that increases access to locally produced, nutrient-dense food, restores soil health, promotes biodiversity, treats animals humanely, revitalizes local economies and prioritizes farmworker fairness.