Wednesday, 22 August 2018 21:44

Restoring Landscape Resilience with Charles Massy

Regenerative Agriculture is a term we are hearing more and more frequently. In the past we have talked about sustaining our landscape. But if the landscape is already degraded, we want to strive for something more. In a nutshell, regenerative agriculture is about that very common goal almost all landholders aspire to; And that is to return their landscape in as good as, or even better condition than when they started.

Charles Massy, a Monaro sheep grazier, believes he was reading his landscape wrong. He was benchmarking his property against traditional agricultural systems that involved high inputs to deliver high returns. Charles now measures his success by animal health, species diversity, profitability and human health. He focuses on improving the nutrient and water cycling on his property, which helps restore the health and production of his landscape.

And Charles is not alone. In his recently published book, Call of the Reed Warbler, Charles has travelled throughout Australia to interview and case study landholders sharing the same values. “The key message I’m presenting is that from healthy landscapes comes healthy profits, people and planet.” Charles explained at a recent Climate Conversation Landcare event at Yass, with over 200 people attending.

With all of NSW now drought declared, and dry conditions set to continue with ongoing climate variability, healthy and resilient landscapes are critical. Charles feels “there is room for a lot of hope and excitement” and that regenerative agriculture is the key to successful agricultural businesses. Focusing on the health of our landscape, health of our people and ongoing profitability we can farm our country and restore its resilience and balance.

Charles still manages the family’s grazing property in NSW while teaching at universities and consulting in the fields of Merino breeding and landscape design. He has chaired and served as a director on a number of national and international review panels and boards of business, research organisations and statutory wool bodies, involving garment manufacture, wool marketing, R&D, molecular genetics and genomics. Charles completed a PhD in Human Ecology (ANU) in 2012 and is also the author of Breaking the Sheep’s Back, providing insights into Merino sheep history and the political destruction of the Australian wool industry.

The Upper Lachlan Landcare Grazing Group encourages and supports more regenerative practices by local graziers and is pleased to have secured Charles Massy to speak at Grabben Gullen Hall on Thursday 6th September. Tickets are $10 for Landcare members and $15 for non-members. All are welcome. For more information, or to RSVP please contact P: 0447 242 474 or E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.