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Definition of Rotational Grazing

Definition of Rotational Grazing

Rotational grazing is a management system through which farmers and ranchers move livestock from paddock to paddock to prevent overgrazing and allow time for plants to regenerate. Rotational grazing increases forage quality, limits soil erosion, controls the spread of manure as fertilizer, and enhances plant root systems, thereby increasing soil quality, water infiltration, and carbon sequestration. Grazers harvest their own feed—grass, forbs, and legumes—rather than depending on corn, soy and other grains grown with synthetic inputs such as fertilizer and pesticides. Rotational grazing is a core sustainable agriculture approach to raising livestock in a profitable and climate- and environmentally-friendly manner.

I find that this is a quite contentious term, though it's perfectly fine from my point of view, (as one who's practiced a number of forms of it). So others have invented terms that they feel better represent it, (sort of equivalent to "beyond organic" and "local first, certification second). One alternate term is "Management Intensive Grazing," which makes a point. For those familiar with the long history of farm-side activism, (but especially over the past 60 years,) to use "management" in this way counteracts it's use against diversified farmers (as in "bad managers," a popular put-down used by agribusiness in the 1980s).

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