As a coalition dedicated to advancing regenerative agriculture in the United States, Regenerate America™ recognizes that the principles upon which this movement is based are deeply rooted in the agricultural and cultural practices of Indigenous peoples and other marginalized communities, and that we cannot achieve our goals of regenerated soils, economies, communities, and health without examining and actively working to overcome the historical and current injustices and inequality in America’s food and farming systems.
We acknowledge that forms of regenerative agriculture have been practiced by Indigenous people across the globe for millenia, and that Indigenous producers continue to steward the land today; that colonization and the genocide of Indigenous peoples historically displaced them from the lands they stewarded and continues to be a barrier to restoring Indigenous food ways; and that the Indigenous roots of regenerative agriculture must not only be honored, but the regenerative movement must center the needs of today’s Indigneous producers within its work, along with all farmers of color.
We acknowledge that the economic foundations of American agriculture are based in slavery, and that discriminatory practices in federal agricultural programs and racially-based restrictive land ownership have created an inequitable agricultural system that persists today. This is evidenced by USDA records that fewer than 5% of all agriculture producers in the U.S identify as Black, Indigenous or People of Color (BIPOC)—compared to about 40% of the U.S. population identifying with a race or ethnic group other than white.
Finally, we acknowledge that many communities across the country struggle to access food due to structural policy decisions rooted in racisim and discrimination, and that foods rich in nutrients or grown regeneratively are still primarily reserved for those with means and access.
We envision a diverse, inclusive, equitable, and just regenerative food and farming system. The Regenerate America™ coalition recognizes the hard work needed to achieve this, and commits to a continual learning and activation process to uphold the principles of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice (DEIJ).
The Regenerate America™ coalition has identified the following goals and actions to help center Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice within our work.
Regenerate America™ commits to the above goals and actions, and to continuing to take a strong stance in supporting efforts to rectify generations of discrimination and provide greater opportunities for historically disadvantaged producers and the organizations that support them. A DEIJ committee will ensure accountability for this continued work through an annual review process, and coalition leadership commits to being adaptive and responsive to feedback and evaluation of this strategy to ensure we are contributing to the creation of a just agriculture and food system that uplifts all.
In 2022, the Regenerate America™ coalition has done the following to center DEIJ within our work:
We recognize there is much work to be done as individuals, as organizations, and as a coalition, and we look forward to doing more in 2023.
Please reach out with any questions, comments, or suggestions of how we can do better to [email protected]. We welcome all feedback.