Is grazing animals good for the environment?

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“Eat more beef to save the planet.” – a seemingly contradictory statement given what we are continuously being told by scientists and environmental campaigners. And yet, so-called holistic grazing or regenerative animal agriculture is becoming more commonly discussed as a way to combat climate change. With the latest Netflix documentary Kiss the Ground also claiming that grazing livestock animals is beneficial for the planet.

Holistic grazing is an idea popularised by Allan Savory, a Zimbabwean born livestock farmer.

Holistic grazing is the notion that by mimicking the rotational patterns of wild grazers and intensively grazing large numbers of animals, we can reverse desertification, increase the health of soils and sequester carbon.

Savory boldly claims that if we took just half of the world’s grasslands we could absorb enough carbon to return the world’s atmosphere to pre-industrial levels.

But what does the science say?


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