Innovative Agriculture and Marketing Partnership

A Public, Private, Tribal Partnership building climate-smart markets and increasing the adoption of climate-smart practices in Idaho.

Coming Soon:

  • Instructions for producers on enrolling in the program
  • Summary data on enrollment, practices and other project outcomes

Climate-Smart Commodities for Idaho

A Public, Private, Tribal Partnership will build climate-smart markets and increase adoption of climate-smart practices on more than 200 farms in Idaho through the provision of financial and technical assistance to producers, with a focus on barley, beef, chickpeas, hops, potatoes, sugar beets and wheat.

The U of I-led project will receive $55 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to fund the five-year effort. More than half of the funding will be used to incentivize Idaho’s voluntary farmers and ranchers to adopt agronomic practices intended to improve soil health and keep greenhouse gases from entering the atmosphere.

At least 30% of project participants will represent underserved communities. Funded partners include the Idaho Association of Soil Conservation Districts, the Nez Perce and Coeur d’Alene Tribes, The Nature Conservancy in Idaho, Desert Mountain Grassfed Beef and Arrowleaf Consulting.

Additional partners in the project include all the targeted commodity commissions, J.R. Simplot Company, Anheuser-Busch, Amalgamated Sugar Company and USDA-ARS.

Benefits to Idaho’s Farmers and Ranchers

  • A win-win partnership — a win for the climate by reducing greenhouse gas emissions from our agriculture, and for growers by improving sustainability and profitability.
  • Expanded markets and revenue streams for farmers and ranchers and commodities across the industry.
  • Approximately 31,000-70,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents prevented from entering the atmosphere annually while replenishing organic matter in cropland soils.
  • Generating data that will help inform future carbon credit trading for producers.
  • Idaho’s producers will be represented with all other funded projects nationwide through this program to inform policy for climate-smart agriculture and food systems.

Frequently Asked Questions

Climate smart agriculture “aims to enhance the capacity of the agricultural systems to support food security, incorporating the need for adaptation and the potential for mitigation into sustainable agriculture development strategies.”

United Nations — Food and Agriculture Organization

Farmers and ranchers of Idaho’s major commodities located anywhere in the state are eligible to apply. Major commodities include barley, beef, chickpeas, hops, potatoes, sugar beets and wheat.

The program aims to enroll 200 farmers and ranchers who may contact funded partners to enroll. Funded partners include the Idaho Association of Soil Conservation Districts, the Coeur d’Alene and Nez Perce tribes, the Nature Conservancy and Desert Mountain Beef.

Average program payments are estimated at $60 an acre dependent on the crop and the practice involved. Some combinations of crops and practices will pay more, and some will pay less.

Covered practices will include cover cropping, cover cropping with livestock grazing, reduced or no-till, interseeding, precision fertilizer application, and partial nitrogen fertilizer replacement with biochar, among others. Growers will get to pick which practices they would like to try from the final approved list.

Yes — however, producers who are already receiving funding for the same practice on the same acreage through another program will not be eligible for duplicate practices. Early adopters are encouraged to seize the opportunity to implement new climate smart practices that may become a staple in their operation.

Funded partners will provide technical expertise and site visits for participating producers. University of Idaho Extension will produce educational materials (some available in both English and Spanish) and bulletins. An online dashboard and portal will share research findings about climate smart practices through text, video, audio and interactive resources.


Supporting Partners

Commissions and Cooperatives

  • Idaho Barley Commission
  • Idaho Brewers United
  • Idaho Potato Commission
  • Idaho Wheat Commission
  • Montana Seed Potato Certification
  • Potato Sustainability Alliance
  • Potatoes USA

Processing and Marketing Industry

  • Amalgamated Sugar
  • Anheuser-Busch
  • Hillside Grains
  • Idaho Brewers United
  • JR Simplot Company
  • Magic Valley Produce
  • Mart Produce
  • McCain Foods
  • Zacca Hummus


  • USDA-ARS (Pullman, Wa and Kimberly, Id)
  • USDA-Climate hub


  • Salmon Safe
  • Wave Foundation

Project Leads

Sanford Eigenbrode
University Distinguished Professor
University Of Idaho

Erin Brooks
Professor, Agriculture Engineer
University Of Idaho

Jodi Johnson-Maynard
Department Head
Crop & Soil Sciences, Univ. of Georgia