September 27, 2023

LOS ANGELES — Tucked away in Pescadero, California, along the San Mateo County coast, is the 1800-acre TomKat Ranch.

What You Need To Know

  • TomKat Ranch is owned by Kat Taylor and her husband, former presidential candidate Tom Steyer
  • The ranch is a living lab testing regenerative agriculture practices to change the food system
  • Part of TomKat Ranch’s mission is to get farmers and ranchers to adopt this mindset shift in a safe way, and proving that regenerative agriculture can be an economically viable business model
  • They monitor their soil extensively with their on-site science team Point Blue Conservation Science

The mission-driven ranch was co-founded by social impact investor Kat Taylor and is a science learning lab that practices regenerative agriculture intended to change our food system.

The practice is all about farming and ranching in harmony with nature.

“It is a way of getting back in balance with nature’s systems, cycles and balance,” Taylor said. “And create a wilderness production-based system for all the co-benefits that regenerative (agriculture) provides.”

This dynamic way of farming revolves around soil health, where an entire underground ecosystem thrives with zillions of microscopic organisms called microbes.

For those microbes to flourish, regenerative agriculture has five principles: minimize soil disturbance; keep the soil covered; maintain living roots; support biodiversity; and integrate livestock.

The practices vary whether you’re raising beef or growing fruits and veggies. But healthy soil is an ecosystem powerhouse — conserving water, absorbing nutrients and capturing carbon — playing a major role in climate change.

“It is the biggest solution set that we have, because it’s both emission-reduction and carbon re-sequestration at massive scale,” Taylor said.

Studies suggest that the global food system is a major contributor to climate change.

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