General Mills ramps up regenerative agriculture movement in Canada with US$2.3m investment

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

General Mills and ALUS are encouraging interested stakeholders to get involved in the regenerative agriculture farmer-led movement in Canada. Pic: GettyImages/Henglein and Steets
General Mills and ALUS are encouraging interested stakeholders to get involved in the regenerative agriculture farmer-led movement in Canada. Pic: GettyImages/Henglein and Steets

Related tags General mills ALUS regenerative agriculture soil health Canada

The Cheerios and Nature Valley maker has forged a multi-year partnership with Canadian not-for-profit ALUS to support farmers and accelerate regenerative agriculture in Manitoba and Saskatchewan – key regions where General Mills sources its oats.

General Mills is gifting US$2.3m, which will enable ALUS to grow its community-led programming with a focus on soil health through its Growing Roots pilot programme,​ which offers both technical and financial assistance to farmers.

The partnership aims to remove barriers to entry and maximise benefits for local producers, communities and the environment.

“We were drawn to ALUS’ grassroots approach with farmers at the centre,”​ said Mary Jane Melendez, chief sustainability and global impact officer, General Mills.

“Now, interested farmers in these communities can gain a greater understanding of regenerative agriculture and how best to apply those principles to their farm’s unique environmental, social and financial context, along with the power of peer knowledge-sharing and community support.”

G stands for good

The collaboration underpins General Mills’ commitment to advance regenerative agriculture on one million acres of farmland by 2030; its pledge to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions – 60% of which are from agriculture – across its value chain (scopes 1, 2 and 3) by 30% by 2030; and to ultimately achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

For more than 150 years, the Minnesota-headquartered corporation has believed doing good and good business go hand-in-hand. The company is putting people first by improving food security and advancing a culture of inclusion, equity and belonging, and by creating positive planetary outcomes through actions beyond its walls.

The US$2.3m will provide robust support to increase farmer mentorship and fund in-field projects that follow regenerative agriculture techniques. The funding will also boost data collection, scientific research and the sharing of this critical information with key stakeholders.

Want to join the movement?

“ALUS has been interested in developing a comprehensive on-field programme focused on soil health for years and we’re delighted that General Mills, a leader in this area, has become our foundational partner,”​ said Bryan Gilvesy, CEO of ALUS.

“We believe the creation of this programme is a catalyst for engagement from other corporate, government and philanthropic partners interested in ALUS programming and its outcomes and impact across Canada.”

ALUS is a national charitable organisation that provides expertise, resources and financial support to 35 communities across six provinces in Canada. Its mission is to deliver ecosystem services to help sustain agriculture, and fight climate change and biodiversity loss for the benefit of communities and future generations.

The duo are now pitching a call out for farmers and companies interested in growing the regenerative agriculture farmer-led movement in Manitoba and Saskatchewan to visit ALUS.ca​ or email Nicole Baldwin at nbaldwin@alus.ca.

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