Case Studies

SHA Case Studies

In the detailed case studies posted here, you’ll learn how farmers and ranchers are successfully implementing soil health-focused regenerative agricultural practices in their operations. You’ll also learn more about the resulting positive impacts on their farms’ food, animals, profits and futures.

Each week, for a total of 10 weeks, the Soil Health Academy will add a new case study to this page. We’re grateful to the farm families featured in these studies for sharing their stories and for providing details regarding key production and financial data associated with their respective operations.

Funding for these regenerative agriculture case studies was provided by a generous grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation.

Unruh Walnut Farms

Unruh Walnut Farms

Unruh Walnut Farms – Colusa County, California Daniel and Rachelle Unruh own and operate Unruh Walnut Farms located in Colusa County, California, near the town of Princeton, CA.  Daniel has a passion for farming regeneratively and has made radical changes to his Walnut Orchards after attending his first Soil Health Academy a few years ago.  […]

Stemple Creek

Stemple Creek Ranch

Stemple Creek Ranch – Marin County, California Stemple Creek Ranch is located in Marin County, California, just north of Tomales.  Centered in the coastal hills of northern California, it is a beautiful, but challenging place to ranch at times.  Representing the ranch’s fourth generation, Loren Poncia and his wife, Lisa, currently operate Stemple Creek Ranch.  […]


Dark Branch Farm

Dark Branch Farm – Kenansville, North Carolina Adam Grady says the enterprise mix on Dark Branch Farms hasn’t changed since the original case study was conducted in 2019, but has morphed into a more cohesive regenerative environment. Today, the Grady family’s primary focus is to get cover crops planted on all cropped acres, every year […]

Hemme Family

Hemme Dairy and Creamery

Hemme Dairy and Creamery – Sweet Springs, Missouri Hemme Dairy and Hemme Brothers Farmstead Creamery are located in Sweet Springs, Missouri, about 60 miles east of Kansas City.  The dairy has farmland and pastureland scattered over a 10-mile radius in Saline County. The dairy is jointly owned and operated by David Hemme and three of […]

Stoney Creek Farm

Stoney Creek Farm – Redwood Falls, Minnesota Grant and Dawn Breitkreutz manage Stoney Creek Farm near Redwood Falls, Minnesota.  Grant grew up on the home farm and worked side-by-side with his dad and brothers all during his childhood. Karl and Deanna, Grant’s parents, quit farming in 1997 and sold the cow herd to Grant and […]

Bock Family Farm

Bock Family Farm

Bock Family Farm – Minot, North Dakota Brandon and Jessie Bock, together with their children, Grace, age 15, and Lyle, age 14, own and operate Bock Farms, about 20 miles north of Minot, North Dakota. Jessie is a stay-at-home mom, having raised both of their children at home. Brandon says she is his “right-hand woman,” […]

Brandt Family Farms

Brandt Farm

Brandt Farm – Carroll, Ohio David and Kendra Brandt purchased his grandmother’s farm in 1971 after being honorably discharged from the Marine Corps and serving in Vietnam.  It was his grandmother’s grandfather’s farm before that. The farm is located in Fairfield County, Ohio near the town of Carroll, OH.  It currently consists of 736 acres […]

Case Study - Wilson Land and Cattle Company

Wilson Land and Cattle Company

Wilson Land and Cattle Company – Tionesta, Pennsylvania Russ and Lennie Wilson own and operate Wilson Land and Cattle Company in western Pennsylvania, Tionesta, Forrest County.  Theirs is a first-generation operation but extending to the next generation looks quite promising.  Their son, Walker, age 13, and daughter, Emmie Lou, age 11, are both actively involved […]

Seven Sons

Seven Sons, LLC, Roanoke, Indiana Introduction: Seven Sons, LLC, is located near Roanoke, IN in Allen County.  The name of the farm comes honestly as there are Seven Sons born to Lee and Beth Hitzfield, the patriarch and matriarch of the family.  The seven sons, in order from oldest to youngest are:  Blake, Blaine, Brice, […]

Schmitz Dairy

Schmitz Dairy – Cold Spring, Minnesota Derek and Taylor Schmitz own and operate their farm in central Minnesota, near Cold Spring. Their daughters, Olivia, 3, and Wren, 1, accompany their parents each day on the farm, in training for their future roles as potential dairy farmers.  Derek grew up in farming and has worked on […]

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