NRCS Conservation Practice Standard – Organic Management 823

What is Organic Management Standard 823?

The Organic Management Standard 823 (OMS 823) is a new interim standard available through the NRCS that provides conservation contracts to producers who are certified organic or in organic transition.

The definition of OMS 823 is managing and improving natural resources on land in and adjacent to organic production using methods which integrate cultural, biological, and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance, and conserve biodiversity. 

Objectives of OMS 823

The practice is used to accomplish one or more of the following purposes:

  • Improve soil health
  • Reduce soil erosion
  • Reduce emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG)
  • Reduce transport of pesticides and nutrients transported to surface water, groundwater and air
  • Improve plant productivity and health
  • Reduce plant pest pressure
  • Enhance habitat for wildlife, pollinators, and other beneficial invertebrates

Highlights of the Standard

OMS 823 offers both technical support and a sizable financial incentive for producers who are certified organic or transitioning to organic:

  • 3-5 year conservation contracts
  • Starting at $75/acre for simple row crop operations (above 1,000 acres)
  • Starting at $210/acre for simple row crop operations (under 1,000 acres) - Payments increase to diverse rotations, livestock and/or conservation practices
  • Up to $2,100/acre for specialty crops, fruits and/or vegetables (small acreages growing food)

Documents and Forms

USDA NRCS Conservation Practice Standard Code 823 (Published Dec. 4, 2023)

USDA - OMS 823 Implementation Requirements (Published Dec. 1, 2023)

Enrollment & Deadlines

OMS Funding Update: Applications and Contracts (April 23, 2024)

March 1, 2024 for those that are transitioning to organic

April 5, 2024 for certified organic producers

Enroll at your local NRCS field office using the USDA Service Center Locator 


Have Questions or Need Support?

Replay our Webinar

The recorded webinar provides an overview and space for discussion about the new NRCS Organic Management Standard 823.

Contact our Organic Farm Advisor

If you have any questions about the program, becoming a mentor, transitioning to organic, or becoming a TOPP partner, please contact [email protected].