The following Letter to the Editor was sent to the Eating Well magazine editorial team in response to an article by Barry Estabrook about regenerative agriculture. Allan Savory and our family’s ranch, Springs Ranch is featured in the article. The editor, Shaun Dreishbach, provided a thoughtful response. He also shared reader comments, which are listed below.
Barry passed on your email and we wanted to be sure to get back to you. Let me start by saying that we are truly grateful to you and Spencer for all of your help with this story—welcoming Barry to the ranch, sharing your story with us, and allowing us to print your beautiful photograph. It has gotten more positive feedback from readers than any feature we’ve done in the past two years. (I’m pasting in some of the comments, below.)
I’m sorry that you felt certain aspects of the story were misrepresented. Sometimes in the interest of space and clarity we can’t go into the level of detail that we’d like to, but please know that it was not our intention to slight Spencer’s parents in any way. They clearly mean a lot to the two of you and I respect you not wanting to cause any hurt feelings. In highlighting your ranch, our purpose was to show the huge difference Holistic Management has made, not to imply that it hadn’t been successful before you got involved. We also didn’t realize that the four of you were running the ranch together. It wasn’t made clear in the copy and I’m sorry about that oversight.
The fence line comparison was Barry’s observation and I think was an important part of the story, in the sense that it helps readers visualize the results Holistic Management can have over conventional ranching. But I understand that fence lines aren’t always the best measure of the health of one piece of land versus another, and even more importantly, that the relationship with your neighbors is very important to you. We were mindful of that when editing the copy and did not intend to paint them in a negative light. Again, the point was to highlight your ranch, not in any way disparage someone else’s.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you’d like to discuss this further. We are so proud of this piece and hope that despite your valid concerns you are pleased with the way it came out over all. Holistic Management is an incredible practice and we hope that by sharing your story we can inspire others to follow your lead. It certainly seems to have resonated with our readers.
All the best,
January 31, 2018
I cannot thank you enough for Eating Well’s article in the January/February 2018 issue regarding regenerative agriculture and ranching. Allan Savory, the Savory Institute, Joel Salatin and Will Harris are all heroes. Their courage in opposing current scientific beliefs and corporate farming practices gives me hope that with their holistic methods we can reverse the damage being done to our earth and our health.
The proof is in the pictures and the “jet-black cottage cheese.” Well done!
Hi, just wanted to thank you for publishing such thought-provoking articles. I really enjoyed reading the articles about plastics, beef and Amanda Saab. The beef article in particular was especially interesting. It’s worth noting that even if Mr. Savory’s theory about carbon sequestration is wrong, his ranch-land management is doing wonders for habitat, pollution and animal husbandry. Have you ever been to a feedlot? It’s disgusting! Look at the “after” photos that Savory presented. How can those pastures not provide better habitat and soil erosion?
Jessie, I just received my first issue of Eating Well. I ordered a subscription that my niece requested, and decided to add one for myself. I was expecting a magazine with recipes, some nutrition tips and maybe some articles on health. I am tremendously pleased to find that your magazine is much more. I was very curious about the article with Allan Savory, and am wondering about possible tie-ins for land conservancies, particularly in the more arid parts of the country to improve the soil on their lands. I also read about the special laundry bags to help contain the plastic fibers from fleece in my recent Sierra Club issue, and now to see it in your magazine with the article on plastics was a great surprise.
I am looking forward to the upcoming issues, and I will spread the word on Eating Well magazine!
Thank you, Mary Blanchard
And we received this one of our own: