Big Inja Farming
I’m looking at implementing an intensive program which mimics the natural movement patterns of wild herbivores on the plains and the birds that follow them. My proposed methodology has been developed from the teachings of Allan Savory and his work in fighting desertification (his TED talk is a much watch), Joel Salatin (His book “Folks this Ain’t Normal” did much to shift my thinking) and modern farmers like Justin Rhodes (See his YouTube Channel here) and Richard Perkins (See his Youtube Channel here).
The underlying philosophy is based on diversity and working with nature not against it. Ruminants have a very special way of processing grass and if we intensively control graze them they will keep the grasses in their rapid growth state (without overgrazing) and fertilise the land in the process. The chickens follow and act as pest control and serve the function of manure spreading. The end result is hyper local premium grass fed cows/sheep and pasture raised chickens and truly free range eggs but the real benefit is to the land. Underlying everything is the desire to be a “Soil Farmer”. I believe thinking like this shifts the value and economics of farming and encourages more holistic management.
Coupled with this I believe that many of the challenges facing farming, like security, locality, seasonality, access to markets, management, quality control and even political uncertainty around larger farm land in South Africa, can be overcome by de-centralising operations and crowd-sourcing production. I believe that technology can now provide the necessary network and platform tools to co-ordinate and aggregate production across a “disparate farm”. I believe that this model can therefore scale and that a collective of tiny farms could create the critical mass and economies of scale required to engage with off-takers and make a meaningful positive impact on people, planet and profit…and purpose.