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News Release

California Department of Food and Agriculture

Media Contacts: Steve Lyle (CDFA), 916-654-0462 ,

California Department of Food and Agriculture
Release #22-049



SACRAMENTO, April 22, 2022 – The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has selected 7 demonstration projects totaling approximately $1.12 million in grants from its Healthy Soils Program. This program aims to improve soil health, sequester carbon, and reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs) by funding on-farm demonstration projects that collect data and/or showcase conservation management practices that mitigate GHG emissions and increase soil health.

The Healthy Soils Program is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing GHG emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment – particularly in disadvantaged communities.

The funded projects are located throughout the state and range from academic organizations to non-profit organizations and Resource Conservation Districts, including:   

• The American Farmland – the project will demonstrate Biochar Application on a California almond orchard, with the intent of analyzing the economic benefits  

• The Regents of the University of California (University of California, Davis) – a multi-faceted plan to implement, measure and assess the multiple co-benefits of climate-smart healthy soils practices  

• Center for Land-Based Learning – the project aims to increase knowledge of the carbon sequestration and GHG reduction potential of biochar in a new 5-acre olive orchard, addressing knowledge gaps on biochar’s ecosystem, and assist in streamlining methodology  

• The California Marine Sanctuary Foundation – a residue management and reduced tillage practice, designed to regenerate soil health in agriculture production while also storing carbon in working lands  

• The University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources – a multi-faceted plan to increase the potential adoption of winter cover cropping, by increasing the information available to growers who want to utilize the practice  

• Rodale Institute – the project aims to demonstrate economic viability and environmentally friendly management practices that improve soil health in vegetable production systems, with the intent to distribute information on the benefits of those practices to California farmers.  

• Kandarian Organic Farms – the project will install new hedgerow through Kandarian Organic Farms to improve security and provide a seed collection site, while the farm expands its grassed waterways.

The full list of winners and the details of their awarded projects can be found here

The Healthy Soils Program was established as a part of the California Healthy Soils Initiative, a collaboration between state agencies to support the development of healthy soils in California. The 2021 Healthy Soils Program was appropriated $50 million from State Budget and $25 million through the California Climate Investments. The remaining funds appropriated to the Healthy Soils Program will be allocated to projects in the HSP Incentives Program. For details, visit the Healthy Soils Demonstration Projects website.

California Climate Investments projects include affordable housing, renewable energy, public transportation, zero-emission vehicles, environmental restoration, more sustainable agriculture, recycling, and much more. At least 35 percent of these investments are located within and benefiting residents of disadvantaged communities, low-income communities, and low-income households across California. For more information, visit the California Climate Investments website at:


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California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814