The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Fertilizer Research and Education Program (FREP) is now accepting pre-proposals for the 2023 grant cycle. FREP’s competitive grant program funds proposals that advance fertilization and irrigation practices and minimize environmental impacts of fertilizing materials. The 2023 Request for Proposals (RFP) includes several initiatives put forth by the department to help effectively manage irrigation water and fertilizing materials in California agriculture.
California’s agricultural communities are diverse, and many have historically lacked access to resources and information needed to successfully run their businesses. Thus, CDFA encourages projects that include demonstrable benefits for socially disadvantaged farmers and farmworkers. Socially disadvantaged groups include those whose members have been subjected to racial, ethnic, or gender discrimination.
This year’s priorities include: outreach, education, and demonstration projects focused on increasing the adoption of efficient nutrient and irrigation management practices and technologies; evaluating challenges and barriers to adoption of management practices; the role of organic input materials in soil nutrient management; demonstrating and/or validating management practices that optimize nutrient and/or irrigation water use; filling knowledge gaps for nutrient and irrigation management in specific crops; understanding nutrient movement from the root zone; and mitigation strategies to reduce nutrient losses.
Applicants are invited to submit two-page pre-proposals to FREP by Monday, December 19, 2022. Pre-proposals submitted should be aligned with at least one of the identified priority research areas. Further information on the 2023 FREP RFP, including timelines, application criteria, and priority research areas are available on the Grant Program web page at www.cdfa.ca.gov/is/ffldrs/frep/CompetitiveGrantProgram.html
All pre-proposals will be reviewed by the Fertilizer Inspection Advisory Board’s Technical Advisory Subcommittee (TASC). Applicants whose pre-proposals are selected by TASC will be invited to develop full proposals.
Since 1990, FREP has funded more than 260 projects, investing over $28 million in research, outreach, and education projects focusing on irrigation and nutrient management practices in California. A database of completed and ongoing research is available on the FREP Research web page at www.cdfa.ca.gov/go/FREPresearch
For more information, please send email inquiries to FREP@cdfa.ca.gov.