Farmers for Soil Health Provides Payments for Cover Crops Planted This Fall

Farmers for Soil Health Provides Payments for Cover Crops Planted This Fall

This state-wide grant is the first of it’s kind with an allowance for farmers to plant lower seeding rates of cover crops. This opportunity is also stackable with our exclusive PepsiCo Program, because you are not claiming any carbon asset if you take their base incentive. Reach out to your PCM Specialist to inquire about enrolling in FSH!

Farmers in a 20-state program can now receive incentive payments for planting cover crops—including cover crops that have already been planted this fall—by enrolling in Farmers for Soil Health. This program also provides dedicated technical advisors to offer guidance and answer questions about transitioning fields to successful cover crop adoption.

“This program is unique because it was built by farmers for farmers, and it assists with the cost and learning curve of adopting cover crops,” says Ben West, executive director for Farmers for Soil Health. “We built flexibility into the timing, allowing farmers to enroll their fields before or after planting cover crops.”

The program provides incentives for adopting cover crops, which have many benefits, including water and nutrient retention in the soil. If the field was planted to cover crops for the first time in Fall 2023, it is eligible for a three-year contract payment of $50 per acre. This is structured as $25 the first year, $15 the second year and $10 the third year.

Enrollment is a simple online process that also positions farmers to take advantage of a future marketplace, providing a direct channel between farmers and end users. Enrollment for cover crops planted in fall 2023 must be completed by February 28, 2024. Enrollment for cover crop planting in 2024 will be available from March 1, 2024, through December 31, 2024.

Farmers for Soil Health is a collaborative initiative led by the Soy Checkoff, Pork Checkoff, and National Corn Growers Association in partnership with state commodity groups and conservation organizations. The program aims to improve soil health by doubling the adoption of cover crops to reach 30 million U.S. acres by 2030. Incentive payments are supported by a $95 million USDA Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities grant.

Visit for more information about eligible states and how to enroll online for cover crop payments.

This material is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, under agreement number NR233A750004G003. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In addition, any reference to specific brands or types of products or services does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for those products or services.