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River Friendly Farms Certification

Get Certified as a River Friendly Farm

If you’re passionate about conservation on your farm and looking to join a community of farmers who are going the extra mile to ensure the health of our soil, our water, and our future, we encourage you to apply to become a River Friendy Certified Farm. The program is currently FREE to applicants and includes a farm application, certification farm visit, and ongoing educational and marketing opportunities. Farms that meet River Friendly Farm standards, as determined by a Certification Committee, use the River Friendly Farm Certification to exemplify their commitment to stewardship, differentiate their products, strengthen their brands, and support credible claims for environmental responsibility.

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Paving the way for Tennessee

The Cumberland River Compact is the first official licensor of the River Friendly Farms program that began in northern New Jersey, developed by the North Jersey RC&D. We are working together to bring their model to Tennessee to be administered by the Cumberland River Compact. The Compact will pilot certify 5-10 farms in the basin in 2021.

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Criteria Evaluated

Soil Health and Erosion

Preventing Erosion while Building Soil Quality


  • Little to no soil erosion
  • Good pasture management
  • Practices protect and increase soil organic matter

Nutrient Management

Using Crop Nutrients as Efficiently as Possible


  • Right Rate
  • Right Placement
  • Right Timing

Pest Management

Preventing the Spread of Pests and Reducing Pesticide Use


  • Non-Pesticidal Measures
  • IPM Strategies in Place
  • Record Keeping & Calibration
  • Mixing and Storage precautions
  • Pesticide Selection

Farmstead Management

Preventing farmyard run-off from impacting local water resources


  • Run-off management
  • Leachate and wastewater management
  • Concentrated livestock areas managed
  • Manure and compost storage
  • Litter and trash management

Protecting Waterways

Riparian Buffers and Livestock Stream Exclusions


  • Riparian buffers on permanent waterways
  • Streams not impacted by on-site activities
  • Restricted livestock access to waterways
  • Irrigation water management

This program is made possible through funding from the Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s Nonpoint Pollution Grant Program.