CDFA has received $2 million from the USDA for a research consortium to implement a demonstration and outreach approach to help farmers improve nitrogen fertilization and irrigation practices. These funds are being awarded through the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Conservation Innovation Grants program, which this year is providing $15 million to 19 projects nationwide to support the development of new tools, approaches, practices and technologies to further natural resource conservation on private lands.
This project will be led by CDFA’s Fertilizer Research and Education Program (FREP) and is a collaboration with the University of California’s Agriculture and Natural Resources division and UC Davis to support farmer-led coalitions in protecting the long-term viability of farming in the San Joaquin Valley.
The three-year project will deploy seven UC Cooperative Extension personnel to the San Joaquin Valley to perform education and demonstration projects, provide on-farm consultation, and conduct outreach activities to promote locally appropriate best practices.
Program staff will consult with farmer-led water quality coalitions in each region to further assess grower needs. UC Davis researchers will study the effectiveness of this demonstration-and-outreach approaches and will identify extension methods that can efficiently help farmers adopt new conservation practices.
For more information on the project, contact FREP@cdfa.ca.gov.