NIFA’s BRAG, ORG, and SCRI RFAs Released

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture is pleased to announce the release of the following Requests for Applications: 

Biotechnology Risk Assessment Program (BRAG):  http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=274693.  The purpose of the BRAG program is to support the generation of new information that will assist Federal regulatory agencies in making science-based decisions about the effects of introducing into the environment genetically engineered organisms (GE), including plants, microorganisms (including fungi, bacteria, and viruses), arthropods, fish, birds, mammals and other animals excluding humans. Investigations of effects on both managed and natural environments are relevant. The BRAG program accomplishes its purpose by providing Federal regulatory agencies with scientific information relevant to regulatory issues.

Application Deadline:  April 17, 2015, 5:00 p.m. ET

Organic Transitions Program (ORG):  http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=274820.  The overall goal of ORG is to support the development and implementation of research, extension and higher education programs to improve the competitiveness of organic livestock and crop producers, as well as those who are adopting organic practices. In FY 2015, ORG will continue to prioritize environmental services provided by organic farming systems in the area of soil conservation and climate change mitigation, including greenhouse gases (GHG). Two new priorities have been added to support (1) the development of educational tools for Cooperative Extension personnel and other agricultural professionals who advise producers on organic practices and (2) the development of cultural practices and other allowable alternatives to substances recommended for removal from the National Organic Programs National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances. Practices and systems to be addressed include those associated with organic crops, organic animal production, and organic systems integrating plant and animal production.

Application Deadline: April 16, 2015, 5:00 p.m. ET

Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI):  http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=274870. The purpose of the SCRI program is to address the critical needs of the specialty crop industry by awarding grants to support research and extension that address key challenges of national, regional, and multi-state importance in sustaining all components of food and agriculture, including conventional and organic food production systems. Projects must address at least one of five focus areas: Research in plant breeding, genetics, genomics, and other methods to improve crop characteristics; Efforts to identify and address threats from pests and diseases, including threats to specialty crop pollinators; Efforts to improve production efficiency, handling and processing, productivity, and profitability over the long term (including specialty crop policy and marketing); new innovations and technology, including improved mechanization and technologies that delay or inhibit ripening; and methods to prevent, detect, monitor, control, and respond to potential food safety hazards in the production efficiency, handling and processing of specialty crops.

Complete Pre-Application Deadline:  March 30, 2015, 5:00 p.m. ET

Complete, Invited Full Application Deadline:  July 2, 2015, 5:00 p.m. ET

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