USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service announced Tuesday that it will distribute $25 million in grants created in the 2018 farm bill to 14 projects across the country.

The grants are awarded through the On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials program, which NRCS says is a component of the Conservation Innovation Grants program. The grant awardees will “work with NRCS and farmers and ranchers to implement innovative practices and systems on their lands that have not yet been widely adopted by producers,” an NRCS release noted.

“On-Farm Trials help producers improve the health of their operations while at the same time helping NRCS build data to show the benefit of innovative conservation systems and practices applied on the land,” said NRCS Acting Chief Kevin Norton. 

Among the 14 projects receiving funding are six Soil Health Demonstration Trials, which NRCS says “focus on the adoption and evaluation of soil health management systems and practices.”

Many of the awardees include land grant colleges including North Carolina State University, which will use funding to add new row crop farms “to an existing network of producers in an online co-learning environment.” Several nongovernmental organizations also received funding for projects like the American Farmland Trust effort to “stimulate the adoption of various soil health practices by involving farms in a coast-to-coast Soil Health Demonstration project demonstrating regionally appropriate soil health strategies across three regions covering seven states and six cropping systems.”

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