CDFA Now Accepting Proposals On New Management Practices For Healthy Soils Program

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CDFA Now Accepting Proposals On New Management Practices For Healthy Soils Program


CDFA’s Office of Environmental Farming and Innovation (OEFI) is now accepting proposals for new conservation management practices for inclusion in its Healthy Soils Program (HSP). The HSP stems from the California Healthy Soils Initiative, a collaboration between state agencies to support the development of healthy soils in California. By providing funds to incentivize implementation of conservation management practices and on-farm demonstration projects, the HSP helps sequester carbon, reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs), and enhance soil health.

As part of program development beginning in 2016, CDFA identified specific conservation management practices for initial funding through the HSP. In subsequent years, CDFA expanded the suite of practices supported by the HSP, identifying new practices through a public process. For example, CDFA added Whole Orchard Recycling in 2020, in which orchard trees are chipped and incorporated back into the soil. To be included in HSP and supported by incentive grants, a practice must meet two criteria: achieving net GHG reduction benefits that can be estimated through a quantification methodology, and having established implementation standards.

“As the Healthy Soils Program continues to grow, new and innovative contributions from our stakeholders are critical to ensuring that farmers and ranchers have the diversity of practices they need to produce a wide range of nutritious, affordable and safe food crops, while increasing climate resilience,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “Improving soil health in California must be a collaborative effort between CDFA, stakeholder groups, sister agencies and federal partners.”

As in previous years, a technical sub-committee of academic experts and state and federal agency subject matter experts will evaluate the proposals, advised by the Environmental Farming Act Science Advisory Panel. CDFA will coordinate further evaluation with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and United States Department of Agriculture – Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS), and then CDFA will select practices that meet the criteria for HSP Incentive grants. As for practices that do not meet the criteria, CDFA may designate them for support by HSP Demonstration research grants.

Proposal requirements, the process for consideration, and other details on submission can be found at: A list of current HSP practices is available at the program website.

CDFA OEFI staff conducted two webinars that discussed the process and requirements to submit proposals, and answer questions from interested stakeholders on June 13, 2024 (Thursday) at 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. PT and June 21, 2024 (Friday) at 9:00 – 10:00 a.m. PT. Slides from the webinar presentation will be made available on the program website. Questions can be sent to during the solicitation period.

Proposals are due by 5:00 p.m. PT on August 2, 2024, and are to be submitted via email to