What is the Healthy Soils Program?

The CDFA Healthy Soils Program (HSP) provides financial assistance in the form of grants to agricultural operations that implement or demonstrate practices that improve soil health and increase soil organic matter. The Program has two distinct components: the Incentives Program and Demonstration Projects.

HSP Incentives Program

The HSP Incentives Program offers grants to California agricultural producers to implement management practices that improve soil health and sequester carbon. Carbon sequestration estimates are measured using greenhouse gas quantification methodology and tools developed by California Air Resources Board, USDA-NRCS, and CDFA. Soil health is assessed by testing soil organic matter before and after conservation practices are implemented.

The 2024 HSP Incentives Program solicitation period is not yet open for application submission. The application submission window is expected to open on January 22, 2024, and close on February 9, 2024 at 5 PM Pacific Standard Time.

The Preview Request for Grant Applications (RGA), updated on December 15, 2023, can be found by clicking here. General questions can be submitted to cdfa.hsp_tech@cdfa.ca.gov

HSP Demonstration Projects

HSP Demonstration Projects seek to improve soil health and sequester carbon by funding on-farm demonstration projects that collect data and/or showcase conservation management practices in action. Applications have been Awarded for the 2023 HSP Demonstration Grant. Demonstration projects fall into one of two categories:

Type A projects will demonstrate implementation of conservation management practices, measure field GHGs emissions, and conduct analysis on cost/benefits for adoption of the proposed practice(s) and anticipated barriers.

Type B projects will demonstrate implementation of HSP conservation management practices and/or conduct analysis on cost/benefits for adoption of the proposed practice(s) and anticipated barriers.

What types of practices are eligible?

Eligible practices differ for the Incentives and Demonstration Projects. There are many practices eligible for funding under the Incentives Program including, but not limited to, cover cropping, compost application, prescribed grazing, alley cropping, and hedgerow planting. Practices eligible for Demonstration Projects include, mycorrhizal application, anaerobic digestate application, and biochar application.

View & Download Practices Eligible for Funding Here.

Need help applying?

Mendocino County RCD is a Technical Assistance Provider for CDFA Healthy Soils Incentives Program. We can provide help with project design, navigating the application process, and answering any questions.

For more information contact:

Seth Myrick | Seth.Myrick@mcrcd.org | (707) 462-3664 ext. 110

Meagan Hynes | m.hynes@mcrcd.org | (707) 462-3664 ext. 106

Linda MacElwee | Linda.MacElwee@mcrcd.org | (707) 895-3230

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