The Massachusetts chapter of the Northeast Organic Farming Association. NOFA/Mass welcomes everyone who cares about food, where it comes from and how it’s grown

Growing Organically Since 1982

Soil Carbon Proxy Testing Program

Carbon Testing

Thanks for your interest in our Soil Carbon Proxy Testing Program!

Healthy soils are living soils, and soil life uses, builds, and stores carbon. Therefore, the greater the health of a soil, the more carbon it will hold.

The Soil Carbon Proxy Tests measure the level of biodiversity and other aspects of  soil health that are attributable to building soil carbon. These tests will help you get an idea of how well your soils are supporting life and storing carbon.

Of course, soils are complex and not easy to compare to each other- but variations in the same soil over time can provide meaningful information about the impact of management practices. One test will provide some indicators of soil health and provide the land manager with a snapshot of the tested area. Repeted annual tests, or even every other year, will provide information about change over time and allow the land manager to see the impact of their growing practices on soil health outcomes. 

If you are interested in having a technician come to your location and run these tests, we ask you to fill out a location form describing the overall location (farm, garden, etc.) and a site form for each site you want tested (maximum 2 per visit right now). Once we get those, and your fee ($50 for one site, $75 for two sites) we will contact you to set up a visit.

After the visit, we will send you the results of the tests and our analysis of what the data means in terms of your soil health and relative carbon levels. We will also provide you with reccomendations tailored to your site, results, and goals.

heathly soilThe more information you can give us on the forms about your practices, the more helpful we can be.

Download NOFA/Mass Soil Carbon Grower On-Site Test Protocols, Manual, and Data Sheets

Make your check out to NOFA/Mass and mail it with the application forms to: NOFA/Mass Carbon Proxy Testing, 254 Lockes Village Rd, Wendell MA 01379. We will contact you within a few days of receiving it.

Questions about the tests or the program? Contact the Soil Carbon Program Coordinator, Caro Roszell at 978-544-9838 or


  1. Download and fill out the "Land Manager Information on Farm or Location Form"
  2. For each site you want tested, fill out a "Land Manager Description of Testing Site Form"
  3. Make out a check to "NOFA/Mass" for $50 for one site, or $75 for two sites
  4. Send them all to NOFA/Mass Carbon Proxy Testing, 254 Lockes Village Rd, Wendell MA 01379. (If you prefer, you can email the forms to us and arrange to pay by credit card over the phone). 
  5. We will get in touch once we receive your paperwork and payment, and will schedule a time to test your site. 


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