David Montgomery and Anne Biklé – You Are What Your Food Ate

Building on their highly influential “Dirt Trilogy” (Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations; The Hidden Half of Nature; and Growing A Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life), geologist David Montgomery and biologist Anne Biklé preview their forthcoming book, You Are What Your Food Ate. They share the growing body of scientific evidence underlying how soil health dramatically affects the health of crops and animals, and ultimately human bodies. The intimate connections between the life of the soil and the nutritional quality of food points to the profound importance of farming practices that can imbue the human diet with the nutrients and compounds that underpin health, or rob us of them. They discuss how a growing vanguard of farmers pioneering regenerative practices is proving that farming practices that are good for the land are good for us too.

This talk was delivered at the 2021 Bioneers Conference.

David Montgomery is a professor of Geomorphology and, along with his wife and collaborator Anne Biklé, co-author of The Hidden Half of Nature: The Microbial Roots of Life and Health a landmark exploration the microbiome. Montgomery’s research looks at the process shaping Earth’s surface and how they affect ecological systems—and human societies. He has studied everything from the ways that landslides and glaciers influence the height of mountain ranges, to the way that soils have shaped human civilizations both now and in the past. He is an elected Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and has received many awards throughout his career, including a MacArthur Fellowship and the Vega Medal. In addition to The Hidden Half of Nature, Montgomery is the author of the seminal Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations and Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back To Life.

Anne Biklé is a biologist, avid gardener, and co-author, along with her husband, David Montgomery, of The Hidden Half of Nature: The Microbial Roots of Life and Health Biklé is among the planet’s leading experts on the microbial life of soil and its crucial importance to human wellbeing and survival.

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