It’s been one year since Patagonia released its film, Fishpeople: Lives Transformed by the Sea. While it may not seem directly related to organic agriculture, the health of oceans is inextricably linked to the health of the soil.
CCOF Foundation Visionary-level donor and outspoken environmental steward Patagonia has a mission to save our home planet. The company's fair and sustainable sourcing practices, their consistent support of environmental nonprofits across the globe, and the powerful platform where they share their values have attracted a loyal audience to Patagonia. Within the last several years, Patagonia has produced a robust oeuvre of documentary-style content about the relationship between humans and Earth—a relationship in desperate need of mending.
Films like Fishpeople might not catch a farmer’s eye immediately, as the subjects of the film are the ocean and its creatures, not cover crops or soil. But by taking a closer look, organic farmers will learn that farm health is ocean health, and vice versa. As climate change impacts deepen and sea levels rise, many coastal farms struggle to fend off saltwater contamination. Organic practices, such as cover cropping and building soil health, keep coastal farms safe from saltwater contamination. Regenerative organic farming protects the delicate balance and boundary between freshwater and saltwater sources.
According to CCOF’s Benefits Report, which was funded in part by Patagonia, “Organic agriculture protects water quality by avoiding synthetic pesticides or fertilizers and by retaining more water and nutrients in its healthy soils. This reduces the leaching of fertilizers and pesticides into waterways.” Higher levels of organic soil matter on organic farms help keep excess carbon from flooding the atmosphere and the oceans and reduces nitrogen contamination of waterways. Organically managed soils also store more fresh water than their conventional counterparts.
These are crucial benefits, as widespread soil degradation and loss of topsoil endanger food security, fertilizers and animal manures contaminate the drinking water of millions of people, and droughts threaten farms in states like California. In our fight against climate change, a healthy relationship between land and sea needs to be re-established, and one of the most powerful mechanisms for creating change is consumer education.
Patagonia does an incredible job of educating the public on environmental issues through its films. Its most recent film, Public Trust, discusses the various communities across the country seeking to protect public lands from further ecological destruction. Patagonia's content is free to the public via the Patagonia YouTube page. The CCOF Foundation is deeply grateful for Patagonia's continued support of our nonprofit programs.
Join Patagonia as a CCOF Foundation donor by contributing today.