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Study Explores Rancher Motivation for Choosing Regenerative Agriculture

A new study from Oregon State University explored ranchers’ motivations for practicing regenerative agriculture. The study, published in The Royal Society Interface Focus, found that ranchers commonly adopt regenerative practices because they enhance adaptability and resilience, and also because they reduce costly inputs. “What we found is that ranchers manage regeneratively for all these other benefits, and if there’s some measureable soil carbon sequestration and it contributes to climate change mitigation, then that’s icing on the cake,” said lead author Hannah Gosnell. The study also revealed that because regenerative practices require a fundamental paradigm shift, incentive payments alone are not likely to motivate ranchers to adopt them.