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Addressing Compaction During the Regenerative Transition: Part 3

In parts one and two of this series, we reviewed the role of biology and the importance of living roots, aggregated soil, and a functioning water cycle for building strong, compaction-resistant soils. Now let’s look at the equipment and field management practices that can help mitigate compaction while you transition to a regenerative system. Compaction […]

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Addressing Compaction During the Regenerative Transition: Part 2

In part one of this series, we reviewed the fundamental role that biological glues and soil aggregates play in creating healthy, strong soil that resists compaction. Given the importance of living roots that drive aggregate formation, how can we use that to our advantage to remediate and prevent compaction? Living roots not only build aggregates, […]

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Addressing Compaction During the Regenerative Transition: Part 1

Soil compaction is the most common problem that I have encountered on farms as I travel across the Midwest. It is so prevalent that it’s easy to forget that compaction is a symptom, not an inherent property of soil. It is the result of poor soil function, which is the result of management practices that […]

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Phytonutrient Advantage: Building Better Beef – Part 2

In part one of this series, we examined some of the findings from research conducted by a science team headed up by Dr. Stephan Van Vliet that had a goal of performing deep metabolic and nutritional profiling of grass-fed beef samples. In this article, I’d like to share even more detailed evidence from the study […]

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Phytonutrient Advantage: Building Better Beef – Part 1

Research conducted by a science team headed up by Dr. Stephan Van Vliet had a goal of performing deep metabolic and nutritional profiling of grass-fed beef samples submitted by farms in various regions of the U.S.  Nutritional profiling included fatty acids, amino acids, phytochemicals, vitamins, and oxidative stress markers.  To fully understand the contributions of […]

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Real vs. Fake:  The Consequences of Our Food Choices

Work is underway now to develop acceptable lab grown meats for the consumer market.  Also known as “cultivated meat,” these products are made by taking stem cells from animals and growing them petri-dish style around a scaffolding in nutrient-rich broth.  The reasoning behind the cultivation of lab grown meat is comprised of several thought processes.  […]

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Armoring Your Soil for the Winter

It is mid-summer, and that time of the year to order your winter cover crop seeds.  In the previous article about winter cover crops for market gardens, I highlighted the important role winter cover crops play in providing diversity and building soil health.  In this article I’ll examine the timing of winter cover crops and […]

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One Farmer’s Regenerative Journey: Part 2

Reducing soil disturbance is the second rule of the Six Principles of Soil Health™.  Tillage and other deep disturbances destroy the structure of the soil, plant roots, the mycorrhizae fungi and ultimately the overall soil biome.  Tillage also allows organic matter to be oxidized, all of which adds up to a decline in soil resiliency.  […]

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One Farmer’s Regenerative Journey: Part 1

One Farmer’s Regenerative Journey: Part 1

Understanding Ag is dedicated to teaching and helping its clients understand and successfully apply the Six Principles of Soil Health™ Based on my experience, the most important of those is the principle of  “context.”  This is the how, why and for what reason a farm/ranch does what it does.  Context is also a way of […]

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A Critical Question: Are We Growing Food or Commodities?

Those of us who grow and raise food and fiber refer to ourselves as farmers, ranchers or producers.  What makes us what we are?  Is it land, livestock, machinery, our skill set? All of these are part of agriculture. What about the products that we produce?  Do we have a good reason for what we […]

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How UA Sets the Stage for Your Success

Proverb: “If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”  As the world’s leading regenerative agriculture consulting company, Understanding Ag has the knowledge and experience to move producers successfully along the regenerative path and, most importantly, provide them with […]

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Tragedy–Above and Below Ground

The severe dust storm that occurred on May 1, 2023, along Interstate 55 in Central Illinois should be a wakeup call for all farmers. Tragically, seven people lost their lives, dozens were injured and more than 100 vehicles were damaged.  Many people believe this dust storm was a natural occurrence, but it was not. It […]

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