Farmers across Kansas are eligible for two grants to help them improve their soil, add tunnels for growing produce or become regenerative.
Using these funds can help farmers save money by switching to cost-effective environmental tools. Without this money, changing farming techniques or adding tunnels may be cost-prohibitive.
The first grant is sponsored by FARMS: Farmers Advancing Regenerative Management Systems. FARMS is made up of a few organizations from Colorado, including Colorado State University, as well as The Western Kansas Agricultural Research-Extension Centers. This organization utilizes scientific, economic and on-the-farm experience.
If chosen, producers are eligible for $35,000 in grants over a three-year period. The USDA National Resources Conservation Service granted the Colorado Conservation Tillage Association $1.6 million to fund soil health plans through a conservation innovation grant.
Applications for this grant are due by March 15. To apply, go to FARMS and click on the Apply to FARMS tab.
Another competitive grant is offered by the USDA NRCS. Producers can contact their local USDA office in Kansas and speak with a NRCS representative. This deadline is March 2.
Eligible producers get paid per acre and can start from $21 per acre to $50 per acre. The grants are dependent upon what aspects of regeneration the farmer wants to try.
NRCS will work with farmers and ranchers on rangeland, soil erosion, soil health and irrigation efficiency. They also can troubleshoot invasive species.
“We’d also work with them to come up with a grazing plan for the grass ecosystem that would be the most beneficial to grazing cattle,” said Isaac Broeckelman, soil conservationist technician for Reno and Kingman counties for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. “Keeping living roots in year round by keeping cover crops on top of the soil and minimizing the disturbance increases biodiversity.”
To apply for the EQIP – Environmental Quality Incentive Program, go to the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Kansas.
Eligible land includes cropland, rangeland and pastureland. Both of these grants will have experienced personnel to determine best practices and help producers implement their plans.