USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture Invests in the Safety, Health of Farmers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced support for projects that strengthen food and agricultural science education in insular areas of the United States. Funding is made through three NIFA programs:

  • Resident Instruction Grants Program for Institutions of Higher Education in Insular Areas (RIIA), which work to strengthen institutional educational capacities in instruction and curriculum within a broadly defined arena of food and agricultural sciences-related disciplines,
  • Distance Education Grants (DEG) for Institutions of Higher Education in Insular Areas, which support projects to improve formal, post-secondary agricultural sciences education through distance education technology, and
  • Agriculture and Food Sciences Facilities and Equipment (AGFEI) program, which supports the construction or upgrade of agriculture and food science facilities and equipment necessary to conduct tropical and subtropical agricultural research.

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Partnership as a Verb

By Sonny Ramaswamy, Director, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Merriam-Webster defines partnership as a noun: The state or condition of being a partner.

I define partnership as a verb: To join or associate with another to create outcomes. Continue reading

Integrated Pest Management Excellence will be recognized in 2018 at International IPM Conference

The best of the best in integrated pest management will receive awards and recognition at the 9th International IPM Symposium, March 19-22, 2018, in Baltimore, Maryland. Ten professional and 2 student winners were selected out of 27 professional and 9 student nominations. Four types of awards will be presented next year: Lifetime Achievement, IPM Practitioner, International IPM Awards for Excellence, International IPM Awards for Recognition and, new next year, Graduate Student awards.

Drs. Frank Zalom and Peter Goodell from the University of California will each receive the Lifetime Achievement award. Continue reading

Don’t make it a Happy New Year for Pests

The following article is in the Texas School Pest News but contains tips for all of us who are anticipating a long break for the holidays.

As we come to the end of December and before you leave for the holidays please remember these tips so when you return you won’t be returning to unexpected guests. Continue reading

Lessons from Rodent Academy (from Insects in the City blog)

by Michael Merchant, Texas A&M AgriLife

Bobby Corrigan refers to himself professionally as a rodentologist, though he’s slow to admit as much to just anyone. He describes the typical conversation with someone next to him on a plane, or at a casual encounter at a party:

“So, what do you do for a living?” 

“I’m a rodentologist.”

“Oh, how nice!” [crickets]… End of conversation. Continue reading

Labels, labels, everywhere! What do they all mean?

Organic. Natural. Hormone-free. Gluten free. Today’s consumers are assaulted with a variety of labels that companies are using to promote their products. However, a study by extension specialists at Texas A&M AgriLife shows that most consumers don’t have a clue what some of those labels mean, and some may make ill-informed choices based on the labels. They have created a new program called Path to the Plate to help debunk some myths and demystify labels for the curious shopper.

Most people who read labels do so to make the best choices for their own health or the health of their families. Many consumer lobby groups have taken their charge to the Internet or to social media to laud or vilify certain types of production practices. “Organic,” for instance, is praised, while “GMO” is criticized. As a result, many consumers concerned about their health look for organic, non-GMO products. Continue reading

REGISTRATION OPEN – 9TH INTERNATIONAL IPM SYMPOSIUM

Online registration is now available for the 9th International IPM Symposium that will be held March 19-22, 2018, in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. The symposium will be held at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel. Register now and take advantage of the early bird price of $375. The registration fee includes admission to all symposium sessions, Wednesday poster session reception, three continental breakfasts, and refreshment breaks. The special price is good until February 19. For registration visit https://ipmsymposium.org/2018/registration.html 

Program: CHANGE IN FORMAT: The Symposium opens on Monday, March 19 at 5:00 PM with a keynote presentation by Dr. Dini M. Miller, Professor, Virginia Tech University, and Urban Pest Management Specialist, State of Virginia. Dr. Miller is an internationally recognized expert in the area of urban pest management, specializing in bed bug and German cockroach biology, behavior, and control. The 2018 IPM Achievement Awards will also be presented on Monday evening. Continue reading