This summer, Patagonia Provisions will release “Unbroken Ground,” a 25-minute film that explores the critical role food plays in finding solutions to the environmental crisis. Patagonia Provisions believes that the vast majority of food is produced using methods that reduce biodiversity, decimate soil, and contribute to climate change, and that food can—and should—be grown, harvested, and produced in ways that restore the land, water, wildlife, and human health.
Directed by Chris Malloy of Farm League, “Unbroken Ground” tells the story of four pioneering groups who are leading the way with regenerative agriculture, restorative grazing, new crop development, and selective-harvest fishing.
The film starts with Wes Jackson, founder of The Land Institute, who through the development of perennial-grain crops is working on a new type of agriculture that will save soil from being lost or poisoned. In the words of Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard, “Wes is doing the most important thing in agriculture in the last 10,000 years.”
Moving to the Great Plains of South Dakota, “Unbroken Ground” profiles Dan and Jill O’Brien of Cheyenne River Ranch, whoare working at the forefront of restorative grazing. Having witnessed the environmental degradation that comes with cattle ranching for so many years, the O’Briens decided to bring the free-roaming buffalo back to their native homeland, offering an alternative to the industrialized food system while also preserving the Great Plains.
Next the film looks at Washington State’s fertile Skagit Valley, where Stephen Jones, director of The Bread Lab, is focused on diversified crop development. Jones is developing diversity in locally grown organic grains to determine which perform well for farmers and which are most suitable for craft baking, malting, brewing, and distilling.
Lastly, the documentary highlights selective-harvest salmon fishing and the work being done by Ian Kirouac, Keith Carpenter and Riley Starks of Lummi Island Wild. Through a process called reef-netting, fishermen are able to harvest targeted fish species while allowing non-targeted species to be released unharmed. This technique has been used for thousands of years by the First Nations people of Lummi Island.
“We believe in the work and passion the people in “Unbroken Ground” bring to changing how food is produced,” said Birgit Cameron, director of Patagonia Provisions. “As our business grows, we’re committed to developing partnerships with likeminded farmers, ranchers, fishermen, scientists, and chefs to create delicious food that’s good for both people and planet.”
“Unbroken Ground” kicks off a nationwide summer tour on June 22 at Patagonia SoHo in New York City, and the full, documentary will be available to view online at PatagoniaProvisions.com and Patagonia.com starting August 1.