To download the Spier Mob Grazing audit for September 2011 to March 2017, click here
To download the Spier Mob Grazing audit for September 2011 to Jan 2013,
Since April 2009 Angus McIntosh has managed a portion of Spier agriculture that involves 74 hectares of irrigated pasture. On this land high-density “mob-grazing” is practised. This technique involves frequent stock rotations (cattle are moved up to 6 times a day) aimed at “using livestock to mimic nature” and restoring carbon and nitrogen contained in livestock and poultry urine to the soil profile.
The project’s pasture management is based on the high density grazing methodology developed in the1980s and espoused by Andre Voison, Allan Savory and Ian Mitchell-Innes. The presence of a lot of animals in a small space for a short period of time deposits enormous amounts of manure and urine on the land and leads to healthy, vigorous pasture growth achieved without applying any fertilizer to the land. Cattle are moved between four and six times per day, laying hens, accommodated in our “Egg-mobiles”, are moved every day.
The project supplies chicken, beef and eggs to retail outlets and restaurants in the region, displacing the supply of industrially produced animal protein to these markets. The climate change impacts of industrial cattle (in particular) and poultry farming are well-documented. The extent of natural ecosystems destroyed to create feed and pasture for cattle is greater than that for all other domestic animals and crops combined and cattle methane from cattle is a source of greenhouse gases. In this project no grains are farmed to provide animal feed and pastures have been recreated from highly compromised land, on which the fertile topsoil has historically been stripped.
No inorganic fertilisers are used in this project and no grains are used as animal feed, thereby disassociating the farming practise with industrial agriculture.
Soil analyses conducted by Brookeside Laboratories confirm a significant and rapid enhancement of soil organic carbon (SOC) in the soil over an 18 month period between September 2011 and January 2013.
The farming operation employs 35 people, three of which act as continual herdsmen to the cattle.
The audited carbon savings resulting from this project are 7 852 tCO2 to date.
Savings are the result of the additional tCO2 sequestered in the soil as the result of this mode of agriculture – a scope 1 emissions saving. The scope 3 saving relating to the obviated need to produce and import grain as a feedstock have not been included.
A commitment has been made by the project developer to the Credible Carbon registry to invest at least 50% of the income generated by the sale of carbon credits in direct benefits to the employees. Once carbon revenue is realised, the nature of this benefit is to be decided by the employee group in consultation with the project proponent and the project developer, and will form part of facilitation of this project conducted by the project proponent. The impact of this revenue on employee well-being and poverty alleviation will be subjected to subsequent audits.