All the Winners of PETA’s New Farming Awards

Climate-friendly farms in the UK are being recognized with a new award.

Agriculture is an important source of greenhouse gases emissions

A 2020 Oxford University study found that current farming systems make it impossible to limit global warming to 1.5°C, even if all other sources of greenhouse gas emissions were removed.

Animals kept as livestock are particularly problematic. According to the UN, industrialized countries animal agriculture accounts for at least 14.5% of global man-made greenhouse gas emissions and 32% of methane emissions, one of the biggest drivers of global warming.

In the race to reach net zero emissions, switching to plant-based foods could prove essential.

To help UK consumers in their search for climate and animal friendly food, the rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has launched its first Agriculture Awards.

Focusing on animal-free and ethical farming, the awards spotlight growers for their eco-friendly practices and products.

“Each winner of this new award is displaying excellence in their field,” says Dawn Carr, director of PETA’s Corporate Vegan Projects.

From a seaweed farm in Scotland to a cow meat farmer who recently moved all his cows to a sanctuary, here are some of the notable winners.

This former meat and dairy farm has gone ‘veganic’

Former beef and dairy farmer Laurence Candy made the bold decision to retire his herd of cows and transition to grain production.

Initially, Laurence had planned to convert his farm organic. But the associated costs and environmental impact, along with a drop in demand for organic milk and a heavy conscience, led him to look for other options.

He made it his mission to develop a ‘veganic’ farm.

“It’s not a niche hippy system; Veganics ticks all the boxes,” Laurence told BioCycle Vegan at the time. “The more I look at it, the more I learn; It solves all the problems.”

Vegan biocyclic farming is purely plant based form of organic agriculture. It excludes all commercial livestock and animal slaughter and does not use any inputs of animal origin.

Northwood Farm has switched from beef to vegan farming. – Northwood Farm | PETA

Mulch, compost and natural fertilizers are used to promote health Earthand biodiversity is encouraged to ensure a healthy balance of pest-eating predators.

Laurence now grows up vegan and organic beans and grains on the 134-hectare Northwood Farm in Dorset, England. Her cows live peacefully at the Hillside Animal Sanctuary in Norfolk.

Since then, Northwood has become the first ex animal farm to obtain the Vegan Biocyclic Standard accreditation in Europe.

“This system of agriculture aims to do as little damage as possible to animals and the environment and embrace vegan principles,” says Laurence.

“There is no way to say ‘business as usual.’ It’s about telling the truth at the end of the day and facing the facts.”

“We have to get to net zero as soon as possible and that will mean a reduction in the number of cattle heads worldwide; there is no other way to do it on the time scale.”

This company responsibly harvests seaweed in Scotland

Scottish company SHORE Seaweed farms 10 species of organic, responsibly harvested seaweed seaweed. They turn this harvest into pestos, chips, and other products packed with protein, fiber, magnesium, calcium, iron, and iodine.

Seaweed it is highly nutritious and is grown in harmony with nature without using soil, fresh water or chemical inputs,” says the company’s CEO, Peter Elbourne.

Located in Wick, in the far northeast of Scotland – one of the most remote communities in the UK – SHORE hand-cuts the seaweed to allow for natural plant growth.

The company carefully manages the local plant diversity of its harvest sites to ensure its techniques are sustainable.

UK’s largest organic vegan farm helps others go plant-based

Tolhurst Organic in Oxfordshire is the largest in the UK vegan and organic farm. It has been certified organic for over 30 years, making it one of the oldest organic vegetable farms in England.

He farm it has been free of grazing animals and animal inputs for the past 10 years. This ‘livestock-free’ system uses less land than livestock-dependent systems and has lower energy requirements, resulting in a much smaller carbon footprint.

Biodiversity and habitat management are at the heart of Tolhurt’s operations. Their owners regenerate the Earth and support wildlife by planting hedges and trees. Increased biodiversity has ensured a healthy balance of pest-eating predators, allowing the farm to avoid crop spraying altogether.

They not only offer fresh vegetable box deliveries to Oxfordshire locals but also give advice on growing organic vegetables to others farmers and any other interested person.

“As a farmer, protecting food production systems means adapting to change,” says Iain Tolhurst of Tolhurst Organic.

“I am proud to run the oldest organic company in the UK. vegan farm and encourage other farmers to leave animal agriculture.”

the whole farm carbon footprint It comes in at around eight tonnes, the same as an average UK house. Compared to conventional supermarket products, Tolhurst vegetables are 90% more carbon efficient.

You can find information about the other Farming Awards winners on PETA’s website.

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