If you search for sustainable agriculture companies online, the first two names that pop up are Coca Cola and Monsanto.
Weird? Yeah, definitely.
It’s alarming how few facts are shared over an issue that so greatly affects our species. What’s more is how certain companies try to use that lack of knowledge to their advantage.
What we consume is increasingly becoming a major topic for discussion and controversy. What’s healthy; what’s not? Who’s practicing sustainable agriculture? Who’s leading our natural world to its seemingly impending doom? What works for a growing population and what simply doesn’t?
Sustainable development comes in many forms. However, as our global population continues to rise, the importance of sustainable agriculture and the value placed on these leading companies’ decisions also increases.
So, What IS Sustainable Agriculture?
To better define the term and begin tracking down the companies leading the way, we must first know what the issues at hand are.
The leading problems caused by unsustainable agriculture practices range greatly, yet mostly stem from soil infertility — the basis of all life or lack thereof. Soil becomes infertile due to many reasons such as monoculture practices, continual chemical fertilizer use, mass land clearing and climate change — just to name a few.
When soil becomes infertile, the land becomes barren and dry, unable to support life.
You’re probably able to guess a few secondary issues which accompany this bleak scenario: drought, poverty, additional negative contribution to climate change, migration, and the destruction of ecosystems and natural resources we rely on.
Given these looming threats, many agriculture companies have stepped in to create not just sustainable, but regenerative ideas and solutions.
When facing soil infertility, climate change and chemical pollution with an ever-growing population, the solutions need to be just as big as the problems themselves.
Damaged land requires an effort that surpasses sustainable development. It requires intensive restoration through understanding how ecosystems function and what they need to continue to thrive and provide.
We’ve brought together the five best agriculture companies for sustainable development as a tribute to their efforts. These companies not only exhibit progressive leaps, but also possess a firm grasp of what the issues at hand actually are. Above all, they put nature in the forefront, where it’s meant to be.
Good Eggs are more than just good. They cover it all.
Agriculture-inspired techies, Rob Spiro and Alon Salant, combined their love for sustainable agriculture and background in technology to support local food systems worldwide.
Good Eggs is a food delivery service that encourages local, ethical and sustainable farmers to continue growing the good stuff by expanding their market. When choosing their produce, meats, fish and diary, they keep everything in mind.
Good Eggs promote transparency between farmers and consumers, keep the land and animals happy and healthy, while providing the San Francisco Bay Area with clean and delicious food.
Sustainable development through spreading sustainable agriculture goodness deserves first place on our list.
Impossible Foods is the epitome of outstanding science.
They have created the Impossible Burger, which is made up entirely of plants. However this burger isn’t your average tofu patty that renders a vaguely similar taste to a real burger, only if drenched in condiments and cheese.
This burger is the real deal.
By using specific components of plants to mimic the exact texture, flavour and colour of a burger, they have fooled us all. Simply substituting a cow burger with an Impossible Burger helps the Earth conserve water and land and it reduces harmful methane emissions from becoming trapped in our atmosphere.
It’s ethical, smart and may be your new favourite ‘guilty pleasure.’ Sustainable development: lab style.
Advancing Eco Agriculture is a farmer’s best friend. The company represents a vital part of regenerative agriculture systems at a soil level.
By studying the soil’s components, experts at AEA are able to decipher what fertility inputs are needed to help the crops thrive.
Similar to how a doctor checks a patient’s blood to determine what he/she needs to become healthy, AEA looks at a crop as the living, breathing body it is. In writing up the proper prescription, AEA’s products are able to produce the best quality produce in abundance.
This takes sustainable development and sustainable agriculture to the point of regeneration as opposed to simply sustaining.
No herbicides or pesticides, only the highest quality in fruit and vegetables… and a lot of it.
Brad McNamara and Jon Friedman began the Ag Tech (agriculture technology) revolution before there was an Ag Tech definition.
The two started by developing urban agriculture systems on rooftops, but soon realized a scalable solution was needed to reach their goals. Freight Farm is exactly what it sounds like: farms created inside freight containers.
Once Brad and Jon’s designs are installed, the containers look more like futuristic leafy green wardrobes — layers upon layers of shelving units stacked vertically under mysterious blue lighting.
What makes this one of our top five sustainable development agriculture companies is what these containers are capable of, and why:
These 40 ft containers hold 4,500 growing sites, seedling areas and environmental sensors that control the climate for perfect conditions. This system requires 90% less water than traditional farming systems and can be used anywhere, at any time of the year.
With a growing population and natural areas needing to replenish themselves from hundreds of years of overuse, Freight Farm holds the smartest and trendiest sustainable development solution in an urban setting.
If Impossible Food’s science burgers aren’t your thing, Niman Ranch is where you should be looking for sustainable meat farming.
Niman Ranch has partnered with a network of 720 family farmers and ranchers to bring the word quality to a different level. Their beef is raised ethically in pastures under strict protocols from an animal welfare expert.
They are also Certified Humane and run sustainable agriculture practices with their veggie-fed cattle. Different from most sustainable agriculture companies, Niman Ranch’s stance is that animals are needed within a working ecosystem in order to keep the ecosystem healthy and vibrant.
By simply looking at their farmland, it’s clear this belief holds merit.
These were tough choices to make.
There are tons of incredible companies going above and beyond to restore our planet through unique sustainable agriculture methods.
That being said, we couldn’t complete this best-of list without a few more honorable mentions.
California Safe Soil is an agriculture company that sees the consumer – farmer relationship as a full-circle opportunity.
By assisting supermarkets in composting their food scraps, they in turn help farmers produce greater yields and prevent nitrogen runoff. CSS uses the compost from recycled supermarket food to create a high-quality organic fertilizer which aids soil fertility and crop growth.
Recycling + Organic + Soil Health = a memorable sustainable agriculture company for our list.
Cool Planet’s solution for soil infertility is as highly scientific as it is effective.
This sustainable agriculture company has created an organic and bio-based formula for farmer’s crops called Cool Terra.
It includes a physical and chemical element to optimize soil fertility and water retention abilities while creating a unique habitat for soil microbes.
The result is enhanced crop production with strong immunity against diseases. Combined with a bio-diverse agriculture system, Cool Planet gives future plants and ecosystems an extra immunity boost to help green our world a little more – towards true sustainable development.
Sustainable Agriculture Today
What moves sustainable agriculture towards global sustainable development varies in idea and design.
As seen from this list, for as many issues there are, there’s an inspiring opposing project to match.
The more agriculture companies make the shift towards sustainable and regenerative practices, the more of a fighting chance our world has to replenish itself and feed our growing population. The greater our understanding of nature becomes, the more aligned with all its incredible gifts and resources we’ll be.
What other sustainable agriculture companies should be on our Top 5 Agriculture Companies for Sustainable Development list? Any from your country? Post below or throw us a message! We’d love to hear from you.
Diana is a Canadian environmental writer and filmmaker whose projects focus on biodiversity and global change. She is currently pursuing various environmental-based projects within South America’s cities and jungles, while mapping out hikes less-travelled on the side.