Healthy Soils Grants Announced!

Healthy Soils Grants Announced!

This week the California Department of Food and Agriculture released the much anticipated Healthy Soils Program awards. Statewide, a grand total of $12.48 million will be supporting 217 projects that build soil health, increase soil organic matter, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions through agricultural land management practices. On a national scale, this funding represents the country's largest investment in building healthy soils as a climate mitigation strategy. This is great news for farmers, ranchers, and the soils of California.

The program funds farmers and ranchers to implement practices such as cover crops, reduced tillage, mulch application, development of grazing management plans, compost application, and the establishment of windbreaks or hedgerows. The awards support both incentive projects and demonstration projects under the umbrella of the Healthy Soils Program. CDFA selected 194 incentives projects to receive $8.7 million in funding across 45 counties and 23 demonstration projects to receive $3.8 million in funding across 16 counties.

So, what happened in Ventura County? I am sure you are eagerly awaiting the local news! In our county, we have 1 demonstration project and 3 incentive projects that received funding. That is a huge increase from the previous round in which Ventura County only received 1 incentive grant. See below for details on the projects funded for the county.

Incentive Projects


Brief Description

Total Funding ($)

Estimated GHG Reduction (MTCO2eq/yr)

King & King Ranch

Converting 32 acres to no-till and planting windbreaks.



The Abundant Table

Increase cover crop rotation, plant hedgerows, and apply compost.



Clow Ranch

Apply mulch to avocado and lemon orchards.



Demonstration Project


Brief Description

Total Funding ($)

Estimated GHG Reduction (MTCO2eq/yr)

Ventura County RCD + Limoneira

Research the impacts of various compost and mulch applications on a newly planted lemon orchard.




For a full list of projects and project descriptions, please go to the websites for the CDFA Healthy Soils Incentive Program and the CDFA Healthy Soils Demonstration Program.

Stay tuned for updates on how these projects progress and opportunities to come see Healthy Soils in action in Ventura County!

Climate smart agriculture encompasses management practices that increase soil carbon sequestration, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve yields and efficiencies, and promotes climate resilience. The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) supports three funding opportunities in climate smart agriculture: the Healthy Soils Program, the State Water Efficiency & Enhancement Program, and the Alternative Manure Management Program.

In a collaborative partnership, CDFA and UC Agriculture and Natural Resources have teamed up to support 10 community education specialists throughout the state to provide technical assistance and outreach for the climate smart agriculture programs. As one of these technical assistance providers, my role is to promote and support the adoption of these programs in Ventura County. If you are interested in working with me, please contact me at