Assistance with CDFA Healthy Soils Incentives Program


At this time, funding is expected but not guaranteed for the 2021 Healthy Soils Program.

In January, Governor Newsom released a proposed budget allocating funding for CDFA’s Healthy Soils Program, which will be finalized on July 1, 2021. If funding comes as proposed, CDFA plans on holding 2 solicitation rounds: Summer 2021 (“early action round”) and Dec 2021-Feb 2022 (“2021-2022 round”).

Grants will be awarded on a first-come-first serve basis, so if you’re planning to apply to either round, consider having as much of your project plans/designs ready to go, to submit quickly (in 2020, CDFA’s first-come-first-serve money ran out before some producers were able to submit).

Hello and welcome to our CDFA Healthy Soils Incentives Program assistance webpage!

 The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA’s) Healthy Soils Incentives Program provides financial incentives to California growers and ranchers to implement conservation management practices that sequester carbon, reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs), and improve soil health. Marin RCD has created this webpage to help local producers apply to the program. Our Design and Implementation Page, linked here, may also be of use in planning for, or completing, your application. Please contact us if you need further assistance. Thank you for joining other local land stewards in working to improve the health of our soils!

You can sign up for email updates and review program details at CDFA’s Healthy Soils Incentives Program Website. Keep an eye on CDFA’s webpage for updates throughout the grant cycle. If and when the 2021 funding round is approved, the website will contain application instructions and resources such as Frequently Asked Questions. On the website, you can also review archived documents from previous funding rounds to get a sense of the program.

Another helpful link is: CDFA COMET-Planner Tool. This tool estimates the GHG benefit of carrying out practices of a certain acreage in a certain geographic area. In the 2020 round, applicants were required to use this tool to complete the Project Budget and GHG Emission Reduction Estimation section of the application.

How to Sample Soils

The CDFA Healthy Soils Incentives Program requires recipients to submit annual soil sample results. You can take these samples easily on your own and send to a soil lab for analysis.

Find the CDFA Soil Sampling Protocols by clicking on this link.

The below video, featuring Miguel Garcia of Napa RCD, shows how to sample soils in vineyards. You can adjust this to a rangeland or vegetable cropland setting. Different than Miguel shows, CDFA protcols require digging to a 8″ depth.

We tend to send our soil samples to A&L Laboratories* in Modesto. Find fee information and a submission form on their website. A&L’s S1B Soil Test Package covers CDFA’s Healthy Soils requirements.

*This is not meant to be an endorsement. If another soil lab should be added to our list of reccomendations, please let us know by contacting


Contact Marin RCD for financial or technical assistance

Funding Overview

Various funding programs can provide cost-share, incentive, or full funding for conservation and carbon farming projects in Marin.

At times, Marin RCD is awarded private or public funds to administer for the design and implementation of Carbon Farm Plan practices on private working lands in Marin County. If you have questions about current funding opportunities through Marin RCD, we recommend that you call us at 415-663-1170, email us at, or fill out the form below.