There is substantial soil organic matter (SOM) loss during the tilled transition from pasture to crop in mixed farming systems, which may reduce agricultural productivity. Therefore, there is a clear need to identify management practices which reduce this SOM loss. My research assessed SOM dynamics following tillage of a long‑term pasture during the transition to crop focusing on the impact of initial soil fertility, lime incorporation and supplementary nutrient addition. The results demonstrate that SOM loss during the tilled transition to crop can be reduced by managing soil fertility in the pasture phase and balancing initial soil fertility with lime incorporation and supplementary nutrient addition. These findings may also apply to long‑term pastures, land use changes and other systems with tillage and residue incorporation.