Retail and consumer trends leader J’Amy Owens and fourth-generation rancher Derek Kampfe formed the American Sustainability Project, a Bozeman, Mont.-based coalition of preeminent thought leaders, food reformers, meat activists, financiers, retailers and ranchers joined together to support food-forward agriculture by sourcing, producing and delivering the world's healthiest and most progressively raised foods.

“The American Sustainability Project was formed to offer a real practical alternative to a food industry that has gone awry," says Owens, chief executive officer. "We are committed to protecting the environment, public health, human communities and animal welfare by working exclusively with farmers and ranchers who raise animals sustainably, meaning without relying on antibiotics, growth hormones, animal byproducts or GMOs. We support holistic practices that preserve and restore soil, water and air quality using techniques and resources that maintain continual viability by consciously preserving our valuable resources for future generations."

The American Sustainability Project is also a resource for universities, government leaders, policy makers, ranchers, farmers, food reformers, think tanks, scientists, researchers, retailers, wholesalers and chefs who seek to learn and participate in the development of an alternative, more rational agriculture. Its mission is to create public awareness through education to create informed consumers and producers that will demand food sources that are safer for human consumption. By providing both leadership and implementation, the American Sustainability Project brings attention to the significant health issues created by large-scale industrial food and livestock production, such as the gross overuse of herbicides and antibiotics, genetically modified crops, growth hormones and the reliance on corn and fossil fuels. The American Sustainability Project also focus on the best practices in food-forward agriculture and features innovation that is already in practice while also championing new thinking.

"We all need to work together to face the challenges of our nation's food system, and we invite all those who are interested to join the American Sustainability Project,” adds Owen. “We also are now able to endorse and promote small farmers and ranchers that deserve recognition for the hard work they are doing to raise superior proteins. We have always set out to change the world 'One Steak at a Time,' and the American Sustainability Project has expanded our vision beyond our retail butcher shops to allow us to further improve the quality and integrity of our food supply by creating markets for sustainably grown agricultural products from the small farm and rancher. Additionally, the American Sustainability Project creates a new outlet for working directly with chefs, restaurants, distributors and retailers to provide the cleanest, most honest, best eating U.S.-based proteins raised using sustainable methods and inputs."

"It wasn't enough to worry and complain about our broken agriculture system; we decided to make a commercially sustainable model that can do something about the problem by delivering vital health, education and influence with each and every pound of protein sold and shipped," says Kampfe, president.