Developing a point of differentiation is a basic construct of product development and marketing. In food and beverage, key differentiators include such historical mainstays as convenience, nutrition and flavor. More recent differentiators capitalize on the perceived benefits of natural, organic and non-G.M.O., all of which are key areas of growth in today’s market. A point of differentiation just now emerging to the forefront is regenerative agriculture.
The concept may be described as an enhanced form of sustainability. It entails using farming methods and technologies that sequester carbon, revitalize soil and enhance the surrounding environment. Advocates claim regenerative agriculture provides important benefits including greater food security and carbon reduction from the atmosphere to mitigate climate change.
The Natural Products Expo West tradeshow, held earlier this month in Anaheim, Calif., is ground zero for emerging trends in food and beverage, and regenerative agriculture was a widely discussed topic this year. During a keynote presentation, Rose Marcario, chief executive officer of Patagonia, Inc., Ventura, Calif., an apparel company that has expanded into food under the Patagonia Provisions brand, spoke about her company’s efforts to work with others, including the Rodale Institute, in the development of a regenerative farming certification program.
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