Regenerative Britain; Farmers; Heroes
It became clear after the first lockdown of Covid-19 that our food supply chains were weak, but by the third catastrophic wave, sourcing local food became a matter of survival.
Civil unrest became common place and once again, like the Second World War, the nation turned to its farmers to save them.
Brexit had happened by default as there were no longer imports and exports, international trade deals were a thing of the past. This island simply had to concentrate on feeding itself.
No business could expect more than 20 hours a week from an employee. The nation expected 10 hours a week in social care / growing food. Mandatory for all.
Unlike the Second World War ‘no dig’ for victory principles were followed.
Our Government had finally recognised that soil health was the key to the nation's health and with a National Health Service, rocked to its bones, we all knew that good food was medicine and medicine was good food and so A Regenerative Britain was born.
In the towns and cities all parks were planted up as food forests.
Non-electric cars were quickly repurposed into chicken houses, their seats removed to become New Age park benches amongst the pallet raised beds of the now garden streets.
No one wasted food.
Everyone composted, even humanure and very quickly nature’s ecosystem processes kicked in . Permaculture principles were used and we learnt about growing in the seven layers. Nutritionally dense food became accessible to all.
Well organised food hubs emerged, we learned how to cook and there was no packaging.
Out in the countryside, the initial resistance to regenerative agriculture that we faced during the first pandemic was now a distant memory.
Everyone knew someone who had died from the disease.
Everyone was onboard. Those who already had experience in regenerative farming practice were quickly set the task of knowledge sharing and farm tours. Farmers stepped up to the challenge like heroes, farmers who had been doing the same thing on the same bit of land for generations understood that now every particle of soil must be treasured, every bug and beetle must be given sanctuary. Even the much misunderstood beavers ( the PM’s secret favourite animal ) were given a free rein to restore the wetlands. Nature was once again revered. We appreciated the role that predators, the wolves, bears, lynx, once played in managing the land. Long since eradicated, we now had to use careful methods for grazing our livestock to create the all important herd effect and allow true plant recovery.
Properly managed, our cows; ruminants, walking bio digesters capable of turning cellulose into protein, quickly and efficiently began to repair our grasslands, sequestering carbon as they went. These exquisite natural systems, allowed to fully function, lead to a reparation of the water cycle. Natural regeneration of trees followed. Flooding became less frequent as the soil could process the rainfall. Wild flowers began to bravely pop up their heads. Tiny beacons of hope, a signal from nature that we were on the right path at last.