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Eligibility and exclusions


  • California farmers, ranchers and Federal and California Recognized Native American Indian Tribes are eligible to apply. 
  • Projects must be located on a California agricultural operation: row, vineyard, field and tree crops, commercial nurseries, nursery stock production, and livestock and livestock product operations. 
  • University and research farms, and city community gardens are not eligible for funding through the HSP Incentives Program. These entities may apply for the HSP Demonstration Projects. 
  • Awards are limited to one per agricultural operation using a unique tax identification number per round of funding. 
  • All projects must implement at least one of the eligible practices on fields where said practice was not implemented previously: 

o A previously implemented practice cannot be implemented on same field. A previously implemented practice is eligible for funding only if it is implemented on a new, different field within the same APN or a new APN.  

o Practices must be implemented on the same field(s) within the APN and cannot be moved to different field(s) within an APN during the term of the grant agreement.  

  • Projects must result in net GHG benefits (i.e., net positive GHG reductions)
  • Applicants must provide past three years’ baseline data on cropping and management histories
  • Applicants must lease, own, or otherwise control the fields and APNs where project activities are proposed to occur for the entirety of the project duration.


  • Funds cannot be used to implement management practices that are not listed under Eligible Practices. All requirements for practice implementation must be followed.
  • Fields that have previously received HSP Incentives or Demonstration awards for a particular practice are not eligible to receive additional funding for the same practice. New fields within a previously funded APN, or new practices to be implemented on previously funded fields are eligible.
  • Compost Application Practices and Whole Orchard Recycling may not be implemented on APNs where soil organic matter content is greater than 20 percent by dry weight in top 20 cm (or 8 inch) depth.
  • Practices may not be implemented on lands or crop types that are not suitable based on NRCS Conservation Practice Standards and NRCS California Practice Scenarios.
  • HSP Incentives program funds cannot be used for projects that use potted plants and plant growth media other than soil.