USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture Announces Support for Education, Mentoring, and Technical Assistance Programs to Help New Farmers and Ranchers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced $17.7 million in available funding to support the delivery of education, mentoring, and technical assistance programs that help beginning farmers and ranchers in the U.S. and its territories. Funding is made through NIFA’s Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP), authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

The deadline for applications is Feb. 1, 2018, at 5 p.m. Eastern time. See the funding opportunity for details.

FY 2018 Methyl Bromide Transition RFA Released

The methyl bromide transition program (MBT) addresses the immediate needs and the costs of transition that have resulted from the scheduled phase-out of the pesticide methyl bromide. Methyl bromide has been a pest and disease control tactic critical to pest management systems for decades for soilborne and postharvest pests. The program focuses on integrated commercial-scale research on methyl bromide alternatives and associated extension activity that will foster the adoption of these solutions. Projects should cover a broad range of new methodologies, technologies, systems, and strategies for controlling economically important pests for which methyl bromide has been the only effective pest control option. Research projects must address commodities with critical issues and include a focused economic analysis of the cost of implementing the transition on a commercial scale. Continue reading

Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants Program (BRAG)

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 — such as 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. See the Request for Applications for details. Continue reading

NIFA to Invest in Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced a competitive opportunity to conduct research on the environmental effects of genetically engineered (GE) organisms, including plants, animals, insects, and microorganisms. The $3.5 million in grants is available through NIFA’s Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants (BRAG) Program.

The BRAG program supports applied and fundamental research to help federal regulators evaluate the effects of GE organisms on their environment. Proposals are solicited to support standard research projects or conference proposals that bring together stakeholders to discuss and evaluate science-based data relevant to environmental risk assessments or risk management related to biotechnology-developed organisms. Continue reading

Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI)

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
  • Methods to prevent, detect, monitor, control, and respond to potential food safety hazards in the production efficiency,handling and processing of specialty crops.

Continue reading

Organic Farming Research Foundation Request for Proposals (RFP) for 2018 Grant Funding

The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) grants program is open to all applicants residing in Canada, Mexico and the United States. OFRF does not fund projects outside of these countries.

OFRF invites proposals from all applicants. OFRF particularly encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students and early career researchers, veterans and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding. Farmers and ranchers often find that working with a professional researcher helps to design and carry out a research project, and OFRF encourages applications from such partnerships.

The deadline for proposals is Dec. 15, 2017. OFRF will notify applicants about funding decisions in spring 2018. Continue reading

FY 2018 Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) Request for Pre-Application (RFA) is now available

The FY 2018 Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) Request for Pre-Application (RFA) is now available for public viewing.

NIFA Funding Opportunity Page: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/specialty-crop-research-initiative-scri.

Grants.gov Page: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=297651. This page includes a synopsis of the funding opportunity, a link to the full announcement (RFPA) and the application package.