California Cotton & Climate Coalition

C4 is evolving the health of California’s croplands through cotton

California Cotton & Climate Coalition

We Care About VIABILITY

We care about Viability
We care about sourcing farm forward and domestically
We care about learning and growing together
We care about Viability
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VIABILITY

We care about the ability to grow crops and protect rural jobs in California for years to come within the context of a changing climate in a landscape in need of rehydration.

We care about Climate
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Climate

We care about agriculture’s role in relationship to climate and how the way we manage landscapes can sequester or release carbon.

We care about sourcing farm forward and domestically
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FARM-FORWARD

We care about sourcing farm forward and domestically, in a traceable and transparent way that is not the norm in the fashion and fiber industry.

We care about learning and growing together
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PARTNERSHIP

We care about learning and growing together: farmers, agronomists, scientists, nonprofits, technical service providers, gins, merchants, spinners, mills, and makers working pre-competitively to see how we can increase the health of land while bringing products to market.

Our Coalition

We’re invested in relationships and we honor how much we need each other.

Farms

Bowles Farming Company

With roots back to the 1850’s, Bowles Farming Company is a family o...

Stone Land Company

Stone Land Company is a family owned and operated farming operation...

Farmers

Tony Azevedo

STONE LAND COMPANY – Tony Azevedo is the ranch manager and a ...

Jerred Barba

STONE LAND COMPANY – Jerred Barba is a PCA, CCA, and QAL for ...

Cannon Michael

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY Cannon Michael is the President/CEO of Bowle...

Derek Azevedo

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – Derek Azevedo is the Executive Vice ...

Alfredo Jimenez Lopez

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – Alfredo Jimenez Lopez can remember a...

Alvaro Ruvalcava

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – Since the day he started at Bowles F...

Diego Ruvalcava

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – Although agricultural careers ran in...

Guadalupe Banda

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – In the San Joaquin Valley, the land ...

Guadalupe Robles

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – When some friends from back home let...

Wesley Carter

BOWLES FARMING COMPANY – As a seven-year-old riding around th...

Jose Santillan

STONE LAND COMPANY – Jose Santillan left his life in Jalisco,...

Juan Canales

STONE LAND COMPANY – Between working on farms in his home of ...

Tomas Solorio

STONE LAND COMPANY – For over 30 years Tomas Solorio has stew...

Companies Purchasing Cotton

Coyuchi

FOUNDING MEMBER / ‘21 HARVEST – With more than 30 years in bu...

Mate

FOUNDING MEMBER / ‘21 + ‘22 HARVEST – We believe fashion is n...

Outerknown

FOUNDING MEMBER / ‘21 HARVEST – Outerknown was founded in 201...

Reformation

FOUNDING MEMBER / ‘21 + ‘22 HARVEST – Founded in 2009, Reform...

Trace

FOUNDING MEMBER / ‘21 + ‘22 HARVEST – Trace is a revolutionar...

Circular Systems

’21 HARVEST – Circular Systems™ is a materials innovati...

Imperial Yarn, LLC

’21 HARVEST – Imperial Yarn is 100% American Grown Amer...

Carhartt

’22 HARVEST – Established in 1889, Carhartt is a global...

Natural Fiber Welding, Inc

’22 HARVEST – Natural Fiber Welding (NFW) is a material...

Laguna Enviro Fabrics

‘22 HARVEST – Laguna/Enviro Fabrics is a domestic knitting mi...

 

 

 

Your name here.
Join us today!

Coalition Team

Rebecca Burgess

Rebecca Burgess is the founder and Executive Director of Fibershed....

Lauren Tucker

Lauren is a leader pursuing cultural change in how humans interact ...

Lauren Bright

Lauren is the Founder and Principal Consultant of Torus: a future-f...

Krystle Moody Wood

Krystle Moody Wood is the founder and principal consultant of Mater...

Danielle Gomez

Danielle is best known for infusing creativity and mindfulness into...

Technical Service Providers & Scientists

Dr. Cynthia Daley

Dr. Cynthia Daley is a professor within the College of Agriculture ...

Cary Crum, Agri Technovation

The majority of Cary’s career has been working in ag sales and mark...

Carbon Cycle Institute

The Carbon Cycle Institute (CCI) works at the intersection of clima...

University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Across California, the University of California’s Cooperative Exten...

National Center for Appropriate Technology

The National Center for Appropriate Technology or NCAT has been hel...

Textile Development Partners

Allenberg Cotton Co.

LDC is a company with a long history of trading commodities as a Me...

Parkdale Mills, Inc.

Since 1916, Parkdale has led the industry in spun yarn manufacturin...

Swisstex

Founded in 2005, Swisstex Direct provides a completely vertical sol...

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Let’s Change the Way Cotton Is Grown

Our on-farm goals: 

  • Increase soil biology and life 
  • Increase soil carbon 
  • Decrease the use of synthetic fertilizers, insecticides, and herbicides
  • Create a model for a California-based, biologically focused, cotton farming system that prioritizes soil health in both a conventional and organic farming context 
JOIN US

Practices we’re trialing

Strip/Reduced tillage
Strip/Reduced tillage
Multispecies cover crop
Compost application
Compost application
Animal integration (sheep eating the cover crop)
Animal integration (sheep eating the cover crop)
Reduction of synthetic nitrogen
Reduction + removal of herbicides
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The Research

What we are testing (soil carbon + soil biology)

In collaboration with the Center for Regenerative Agriculture and Resilient Systems and technical service providers soil monitoring and analysis is occurring to provide an understanding of the effect of practices known to build soil carbon. Soil testing and analysis is an on-going function of this work, and central to the coalition’s commitment to better understand carbon flows between atmosphere, biosphere and pedosphere.

 

Carbon flows are currently not well represented in textile life cycle assessments; we are working as a community of scientists, farmers, brands, and NGOs to remedy this and bring greater transparency to the movement of carbon molecules.

Water
Water

Two tests to understand water use efficiency. Water infiltration (establishes porosity); Water holding capacity (soil sponge)

PLFA
PLFA

A test to assess biological diversity and the Fungal:Bacterial ratio.

Water
Water

Two tests to understand water use efficiency. Water infiltration (establishes porosity); Water holding capacity (soil sponge)

PLFA
PLFA

A test to assess biological diversity and the Fungal:Bacterial ratio.

Soil carbon sequestration
Soil carbon sequestration

Several tests to indicate soil carbon sequestration and state change. Soil Organic Carbon; Soil Organic Matter; PoxC; C:N ratios; Bulk Density (porosity); % Microbial Biomass; % Microbial Active Carbon (determines how efficiently your soil microbes are using carbon); Organic C:N; Total Carbon; Total Organic C.

Soil respiration rate
Soil respiration rate

A test to understand how much CO2 is being generated through cellular respiration by the root tips and the biology (an aerobic process supported by soil carbon and porosity).

Haney test + Nutrients/Minerals
Haney test + Nutrients/Minerals

A test to understand the quantity of soil nutrients available to soil microbes, and nutrient + mineral tests: Total N; Total Organic N; Nitrate N; Ammonium N; Total Inorganic N; Available N, P, K.

Aggregate stability
Aggregate stability

A test to tell us how well the biological community is creating the glues that hold healthy soil structure.

A Verification,
not a Certification

  1. The Climate Beneficial™ Cotton program is designed to scale the implementation of carbon farming practices within the working landscapes of California's Central Valley. We aim to benefit growers, rural communities, our shared environment, and the textile brands who are working to enhance direct relationships with the people who grow food & fiber.
  2. The program’s emphasis is to enhance biological life within irrigated cropland soils, to improve soil structure, soil-water holding capacity, natural fertility and carbon drawdown. And thereby, increase resilience to drought, counter erosion, and benefit the climate.
  3. This is a verification program with a rigorous set of soil and water infiltration testing, annual monitoring, and continuous trialing of what growing methods will achieve our goals.
  4. We’re relying on signed agreements with farms about implementation methods and practices and measuring changes in-field with science. The cotton grown in this project carries the Climate Beneficial trademark through Fibershed.

How We Came to Be

Our rangeland soils in California have lost half of their historic carbon stocks. In cropland systems that have been tilled it is estimated that these losses are higher.

Carbon is nature’s fuel source for all soil ecosystem processes. Without implementing practices to rebuild the carbon (and thus biology) of the soil, the push for chemistry and tillage in production agriculture will persist and agricultural yields will shrink as these systems fail. 

Fibershed, White Buffalo Land Trust, Torus Circularity and Materevolve didn’t decide to start a coalition and enroll farmers and companies. We responded to an emerging need: 

  • Farms interested in on-farm scientific research to understand how to shift practices to prioritize soil carbon in cotton growing systems 
  • Companies interested in Climate Beneficial™ Cotton sourced in our “backyard” – California’s Central Valley. 

We joined together and in the Fall of 2020, C4 was born. We’ve invited all stakeholders from seed to product to join us in this effort. And, although we still have a lot of work to do, we’re already planning our obsolescence. We believe that it’s imperative for farm-forward, climate beneficial sourcing to become the norm and for all partners working with us to build the expertise to design textiles in this way. Our team (Fibershed, White Buffalo Land Trust, Torus Circularity, and Materevolve) aims to step out of the management of this effort once the system is up and running.

About California Cotton & Climate Coalition

Join Us

Companies participating in the coalition are paying a premium for cotton and a coalition fee for precompetitive textile development, storytelling, and educational services. A premium cotton price allows on-farm changes to be economically viable and provides an incentive for future acreage transition to these soil building, climate beneficial farming practices.

We still have cotton available for sale (2022 harvest) and are accepting orders for 2023 harvest year.

JOIN US NOW

Benefits of joining C4

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  • Education - farm tours and webinars

    Education - farm tours and webinars

  • Collaborative Marketing + Storytelling Support

    Collaborative Marketing + Storytelling Support

  • Pre-competitive Textile Development

    Pre-competitive Textile Development

  • Access to purchasing cotton from farm partners

    Access to purchasing cotton from farm partners

Hear from Our Coalition

“We’ve done a great deal in our recent history to devalue critically important facets of our ecosystem for the purpose of accumulating monetary capital. There’s no time like the present to recapitalize and recarbonize our soils, put the necessary value on a balanced carbon cycle, and honor all the human relationships that make our textile culture manifest.”

Rebecca Burgess Founder & Director, Fibershed

“The collaboration that is being put forth between buyers and farmers is something that could revolutionize the way our cotton can be sold. At Stone Land Company, we pride ourselves on producing high quality commodities, and the partnership with C4 has allowed us to showcase the attention to detail we put forth in our farming practices."

Jerred Barba Agronomist, Stone Land Company

"C4 is a one-of-a-kind endeavor. Each stakeholder has uniquely centered around our relationship with the soil, the farm-level agro-economic equation, and with each other not purely as technical service providers in a supply/demand relationship, but as humans working in partnership to answer tough questions and practice empathy, open communication, and active problem solving.”

Lauren Bright Founder & Principal Consultant at Torus

"We see this coalition as a tremendous opportunity for brands to pursue meaningful action in collaboration with farmers. This group has the potential to make enormous strides in soil health, traceability, and deepen relationships within supply chains partners."

Mate the Label

“Never before have there been so many voices united toward the advancement of regeneration, and I am beyond thrilled to see how strength in numbers can benefit all of us. Coyuchi is proud to be a founding brand of the Coalition and hopes to influence other businesses to join us on this journey.”

Eileen Mockus CEO & President, Coyuchi

“This project began as a relationship-building project and has maintained this essence, with stakeholders from farm to customer at the table learning together how we may positively impact the climate and improve growing methods within cotton growing systems."

Lauren Tucker Special Projects, White Buffalo Land Trust

“Bowles Farming Company is excited to be part of the C4 team because it allows us to create a clear connection through the supply chain, and provide consumers the opportunity to access cotton produced with sustainable and ethical practices.”

Cannon Michael President & CEO, Bowles Farming Company

"At Materevolve, we feel fortunate to be apart of such a stellar community of farmers, brands, technical service providers, scientists and thought leaders at the intersection of soil health and textile systems; the California Cotton & Climate Coalition has developed a much needed working model for deeper collaboration, deeper transparency, hands on learning, and scaling Climate Beneficial Cotton systems as whole system. "

Krystle Moody Wood Founder & Principal Consultant at Materevolve, LLC

"We needed a cotton to blend with our hemp that upholds our company values of reciprocity with nature and each other, and we couldn't find that within organic cotton.”

Claire Crunk Founder, Trace

“Parkdale is honored to have partnered with this innovative and passionate group to make sustainable cotton traceability a reality.”

Parkdale Mills, Inc.

"As a California-based sustainable fashion brand and C4 member, Reformation is committed to investing in the future and health of our planet, including the unique Californian bioregion. C4 cotton is important as we work towards achieving climate positivity and reaching our goal to have 100% of our fabrics be from recycled, regenerative or renewable materials by 2025 ."

Reformation
California Cotton & Climate Coalition

Let’s Talk

We’d love to hear from you!