Pete Huff is an Associate Director at the Wallace Center where he oversees the Resilient Agriculture & Ecosystems Initiative and the Pasture Project. His background is in regenerative agriculture and food system program design and implementation in the U.S. and Australia, including farm management. He holds degrees in Environmental Management and History from Indiana University and a Masters of Public Affairs from the University of Minnesota. He’s based in western Wisconsin.
Regenerative Grazing Is a Piece of a Bigger Regenerative Puzzle
We start an effort in a good conversation, meeting folks where they are and figure out a common goal together--healthy soils and ecosystems in a community are almost always common goals.--Pete Huff
We're talking about catalyzing a farm to food system vision for regenerating community health, wealth, resilience and well-being.
In this interview I talk with Pete Huff, Associate Director at the Wallace Center where he directs the Pasture Project and oversees the Resilient Agriculture & Ecosystems Initiative. Pete has been working to bring more resilient farming practices to the upper Midwest. In particular he focuses on rotational grazing of cows that can be integrated into row crop and other perennial systems, where cows graze cover crops and other forage greens, mimicking the role of large animals like bison in prairie ecosystems that once covered the Midwest and central plains.
Pete talks about his personal vision for protecting ecosystems, creating equity and equality and how his work leading the Pasture Project and other initiatives is supporting a vision for agriculture that builds healthy soil, farm viability and community resiliency in the Midwest.
Pete points to the growing interest in the economic potential of regenerative grazing for farmers seeking to build healthy soil, move away from costly production practices and reduce their downstream impacts to water and their ecosystem. And he believes that the pandemic's disruption in meat processing is creating opportunities for farm diversification and pointing to the vulnerability in our food system from consolidation.
Pete strives to connect people around a common goal--healthy soils, clean water, healthy ecosystems and building on something good going on in the community can unify. He finds that with support and the right tools, when people come together with a shared purpose they are able to figure things out. Pete talks about some of the innovative decision support and community building tools the Wallace Center is designing to support the expansion of regenerative agriculture and meet needs with technical solutions, innovative financial tools, and REGAIN a new community building platform.
Pete says he knows he's successful when areas where he works are seeing the development of peer-to-peer networks, shared passion and shared goals and are figuring out how to get to a regenerative outcome for their community.
Please enjoy my conversation with Pete to learn how we can catalyze and support a regenerative farming and food system that works for everyone.
Don't forget, I’ve created a special Our Food Is Our Future Facebook Group where you can join the conversation and share your reflections, questions and ideas about creating a healthier farming and food system.
Here's to a healthier farming and food system for us all,