Updates from the Field: Tackling Climate Change, One Acre at a Time

“We envision a world free of poisonous chemicals, factory farming, exploitation and income inequality, soil degradation, habitat destruction, pollution, short-term thinking, corporate bullies, greenwashing, and fake food.”
Elizabeth Whitlow, Executive Director, Regenerative Organic Alliance

The writing’s on the wall. It has been for years. Anthropogenic climate change is upon us, and it’s impacting everything from weather patterns to crop production to sea levels. According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC): “Science makes it clear that to avert the worst impacts of climate change, we must address the greenhouse gas emissions from the food and agriculture sectors…[we] must transition toward regenerative systems that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, build soil health, protect public and environmental health, grow more nutritious foods, and increase equity and resilience.”

Dr. Bronner’s has been on the cutting edge of the movement towards regenerative organic agriculture for several decades—from building dedicated organic and fair trade global supply chains to campaigning for GMO labeling and hemp policy reform, to speaking up for farmed animals, and most recently co-launching the Regenerative Organic Certified™ (ROC™) standards alongside Patagonia, Rodale, and other leading NGOs, farms, and brand partners.

As a founding member of the Regenerative Organic Alliance (ROA), Dr. Bronner’s was one of nineteen brands that participated in piloting the ROC standards in 2019. Through the pilot program, our partners achieved ROC-Silver certification for three of our major raw materials – mint oil from Pavitramenthe in India, palm oil from Serendipalm in Ghana, and virgin coconut oil from Serendipol in Sri Lanka.

The ROA has been charging forward (despite these difficult Covid years) working with brands, farms, and certifiers to ramp up the number of ROC acreage and operators around the world. This means more and more farms, facilities, and products are certified to ensure their practices adhere to the highest standards for soil health, animal welfare, and social fairness. Here are some highlights:

58 Farms & 28.4k Smallholder Farmers are now ROC, representing
108 ROC Crops & 171k+ ROC Acres
26+ Brands are licensed to use the ROC seal

Keep your eyes peeled for the seal!

ROC Farm Highlights, plus:
Check Out the ROC Farm Directory for a full listing!


Oatman Flat’s Farm Attendant, Juan Carlos Gutierrez, Gila Bend, AZ
Photo credit: oatmanflatsranch.com

“Every pound of wheat from Oatman Flats Ranch saves 700 gallons of water 🌾 By growing Regenerative Organic Certified™ native and heritage crops, Oatman Flats Ranch is conserving millions of gallons of water in Arizona’s Gila River Aquifer while replenishing the landscape and preserving their region’s rich history. They are creating the first regenerative organic farming business model in a hot and dry climate.

Oatman Flats Ranch grows 3 varieties of once-widespread heritage wheats that showcase the diverse flavors of the Sonoran Desert. These wheat varieties include White Sonora wheat, Blue Beard Durum, and Red Fife, all of which they are reintroducing to consumers. They also grow Skagit 1109, a modern wheat variant that was developed as a whole grain for human health, They also harvest seed pods from the ranch’s wild mesquite trees that are then ground into fine flours.

Dax Hansen also created Oatman Farms, a consumer product good (CPG) company that sells premium sourdough bread, pancake, and waffle mixes that are made using the regenerative wheat they grow on the ranch, along with other organic high-quality ingredients.
Heritage wheats are delicious, nutrient-rich, and use significantly less water to grow than customary crops of the region. To follow along with their journey towards future resiliency, visit the @oatman_flats_ranch website (oatmanflatsranch.com) and @oatmanfarms premium baking mix company website (oatmanfarms.com) to pre-order sourdough bread, pancake, and waffle mixes.” – instagram.com/regenerativeorganic


Ashley Walsh, Founder of Pocono Organic Farm, Long Pond, PA
Photo credit: poconoorganics.com

“Join us in celebrating the newly-announced @rodaleinstitute @poconoorganics Center, a regional resource center for Pennsylvania farmers that promotes and enhances access to regenerative organic farming resources and research 🧑‍🌾🎉

Pocono Organics is North America’s largest Regenerative Organic Certified™ vegetable farm, growing the world’s first ROC™ hemp.

Goals of the Center include:
🌱 Research innovative regenerative organic farming methods and serve as the Rodale Institute Regenerative Organic Certified example to area farmers, providing them with education and resources to implement those methods on their own farms.
🌱 Gather data on differences between conventional and organic farming
methods for hemp and other products in Pennsylvania.
🌱 Expand public access to Rodale Institute’s research.
🌱 Create progressive opportunities in agriculture.” – instagram.com/regenerativeorganic

Author Profile

Astarae Metcalf

As Dr. Bronner's Senior Strategic Partnerships and Campaigns Manager, Astarae Metcalf has worked on many public education, sales and marketing, and political campaigns to advance hemp, regenerative organic agriculture, social equity, the environment, and other issues.

See all stories by Astarae Metcalf