Soil Health

Our Soil Health research develops sustainable on-farm practices from the ground-up, creating innovative solutions to improve soil health from measurement to adoption.

Program Contact

Dr. LaKisha Odom

Development Contact

Dr. Kashyap Choksi

Soil Health Research Vision

We aim to grow nutritious, affordable food on thriving farms. Our Soil Health Challenge Area develops and deploys the latest technology and knowledge, helping farmers build and maintain healthy, productive soil.

Our Research Focuses on:

  • Resiliency & adaptation
  • Site-specific decision making
  • Farmer Wellbeing
  • Novel pathways to adoption

This research supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals, 17 global goals to enhance peace and prosperity, eradicate poverty and protect the planet. Our Soil Health Challenge Area builds partnerships to fund research supporting the following SDGs:

Learn more about our Soil Health research goals.

Why Are We Tackling Soil Health Challenges?

Some farming practices harm soils, depriving them of nutrients, killing the beneficial bacteria and fungi in the soil, or leaving them vulnerable to washing away. Climate change is further accelerating the loss and degradation of soils.

Yet, we need nutrient-rich soils to grow healthy, flavorful food. Thriving soils also bolster crop yields, increase water retention, protect water quality, prevent erosion, sequester carbon, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve biodiversity.

We created the Soil Health Challenge Area to develop sustainable on-farm practices and empower farmers to implement these practices to improve their soils. Our Soil Health research ultimately protects farmer’s livelihoods and the environment, while increasing productivity.

We Pioneer Soil Health Research

Congress established FFAR to increase public agriculture research investments, fill knowledge gaps and complement USDA’s research agenda. Our public-private partnerships match federal funding from Congress with private funding, delivering a powerful return on taxpayer investment.

Our Soil Health grants, programs and consortium produce data-driven results to help farmers make sustainable decisions that support thriving farms.

Learn more about our Soil Health grants, programs and consortium.

Awarded Grant

See all Soil Health Awarded Grants

Soil Health Consortium

Want to do more to tackle Soil Health challenges?

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