Where is the evidence supporting Holistic Management?

In the early years, the Savory Institute often faced critics asking "where’s the science?" Admittedly, there weren’t many peer-reviewed studies we could point to… at least not at the time.

In recent years, however, there has been a groundswell of research coming out of Texas A&M, Michigan State University, Berkeley, University of Nairobi, University of South Africa, and beyond. This research has studied real-world Holistic Management practitioners with decades of experience, and the results speak to the ecological, economic, and social ways in which managing holistically can positively impact our world.

To highlight this significant work, and to offer a new perspective to the reductionist anti-livestock crowd, the Savory Institute is putting greater effort into making the science of Holistic Management more accessible, including the following resources:

  • Savory’s Library — This searchable library includes a plethora of peer-reviewed journal articles, case studies, and whitepapers from researchers studying a wide range of issues pertaining to Holistic Management, grasslands, desertification, and soil health.
  • "The Science of Holistic Planned Grazing" webinar — This webinar with Dr. Richard Teague discusses his many years of research at Texas A&M studying the effects of Holistic Planned Grazing on North American ranches.
  • Of course, there is also our Ecological Outcome Verification (EOV) protocol – the backbone of our Land to Market program – that is now being used on over 2.5 million acres worldwide to measure leading and lagging indicators of ecosystem health, helping inform management decisions but also providing verifiable proof of regeneration claims.

With a flurry of peer-reviewed papers currently in the pipeline and EOV data continually being collected, expect more scientific support from Savory in the future. Hopefully, bit by bit, together we can improve ecological literacy and help dispel the misconceptions about grazing that inform public opinions on livestock.

More information can also be found in the Research, Evidence and Issues section of Savory's Knowledge Base. 

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