APHIS Adds South Carolina to the Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis) Regulated Area

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is adding all of South Carolina to the list of regulated areas for the emerald ash borer (EAB). APHIS is taking this action in response to the detection of EAB in Greenville, Oconee, and Spartanburg Counties and because the state has decided to establish a full state quarantine.

To prevent the spread of EAB to other states, the attached Federal Order outlines specific conditions for the interstate movement of EAB-regulated articles from South Carolina. Specifically, the interstate movement of EAB-host wood and wood products from South Carolina is regulated, including firewood of all hardwood species, nursery stock, green lumber, waste, compost, and chips of ash species. Continue reading

USDA Invests in Research on Next Generation of Agricultural Technology

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 17 grants for research on the next generation of agricultural technologies and systems to meet the growing demand for food, fuel, and fiber. The grants are funded through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“Technology is front and center in agricultural production,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “NIFA is investing in research on precision and smart technologies to maximize production efficiencies, including water and fertilizer use, and to produce nutritious food, new biofuels, and bioproducts.” Continue reading