Regenerative farming may well be the answer to many environmental and food supply issues. CIBO, a science-based technology company, developed a system to support growers making the transition to regenerative agriculture. Called CIBO Grower, the technology connects farmers with incentive programs they may qualify for.
In a press release, the company said, “The new application helps farmers and their trusted advisors easily navigate and participate in the evolving landscape of incentive programs such as carbon credit markets, Scope 3 emissions reduction and premiums for regenerative and low-carbon grains.”
Through a simple process, farmers register for CIBO Grower and securely enter data about their fields and management practices. They are then immediately matched with applicable programs. The data about the programs not only ensures eligibility, but allows growers to understand the financial aspects of various regenerative agricultural incentive programs. Growers can then choose the programs that best match their operation and even enroll immediately.
“The bottom line: We want to unlock the true power of regenerative agriculture,” said Dr. Jenette Ashtekar, SVP of product management at CIBO Technologies. “First, we need to get enough growers to make the transition to these management practices. It takes upfront capital and ongoing incentives. It takes good data, technology and other technical support. And we need strong partnerships between growers and companies with Scope 3 emission goals. CIBO is bringing all of these pieces together so we can collectively reach our climate goals.”
What is regenerative agriculture?
The terms regenerative agriculture or regenerative farming describe an assortment of farming practices that sequester carbon, improve the soil, reduce waste and improve yield. The movement encompasses actions like composting, growing organic food and creating crop diversity. Carbon sequestration is encouraged through no-till farming, cover crops and animal management.
While sustainable agriculture is undeniably good for the planet and the population, adoption has been slow for many reasons. Part of the hesitation is the expense of changing current operations. This is where incentives can take away some of the risk involved.
Many farmers who have already made the transition, or are trying to incorporate regenerative farming practices, understand the potential benefits of not only reducing, but reversing global warming. While much of the public discussion is focused on the damage caused by carbon emissions through the use of fossil fuels, the other side of the equation is carbon sequestration. Plants are the miracle that keep the carbon in the soil where it can be stored eternally. However, with traditional farming practices such as tilling the fields, that carbon is released back into the environment.
Making better animal, land and crop management decisions results in a reduction of carbon. Not only that, but also reduces air and water pollution caused by fertilizers, insecticides and other chemicals.
Why is the CIBO Grower helping regenerative farmers?
The CIBO Grower software supports farmers who are trying out new methods or expanding their efforts within regenerative farming practices. The goal is to educate farmers leaning into regenerative agriculture about incentives that can help them achieve their goals. Then, CIBO Grower makes it easy to access those resources, from qualification through enrollment.
“CIBO Grower simplifies the process of qualification and enrollment into a variety of incentive programs that can support farmers transitioning to regenerative agriculture,” said Daniel Ryan, CEO at CIBO Technologies. “The powerful program engine underpinning CIBO Grower enables rapid development and delivery of a multitude of incentive programs.”
At launch, the CIBO Grower platform evaluates three incentive programs. The first is CIBO Carbon Bridge.
“CIBO Carbon Bridge eliminates risk for new adopters of regenerative agriculture when entering carbon markets,” said the company. “Growers receive fixed payments — up to $35 per acre in the first year — and free agronomic support during the crucial early years of building soil health and creating carbon credits.”
The second is called CIBO Certified Regenerative. It recognizes farmers adopting regenerative agriculture with a one-time cash payment and a certificate verifying low-carbon yields.
Finally, the third program is known as CIBO Carbon Credits: Verra Project 1. This program, “offers a new revenue stream for growers as they make their operation more climate-friendly, resilient, and profitable.”
CIBO was founded by Flagship Pioneering in 2015 with a focus on using advanced technology to make a difference in the realms of climate change, agricultural systems, food development and sustainable practices. The company plans to regularly add incentive programs.
Images via CIBO