Agriculture and Food Research Initiative – Sustainable Agricultural Systems

Applications to the FY 2018 Agriculture and Food Research Initiative – Sustainable Agricultural Systems (SAS) Request for Applications (RFA) must focus on approaches that promote transformational changes in the U.S. food and agriculture system within the next 25 years. NIFA seeks creative and visionary applications that take a systems approach, and that will significantly improve the supply of abundant, affordable, safe, nutritious, and accessible food, while providing sustainable opportunities for expansion of the bioeconomy through novel animal, crop, and forest products and supporting technologies. These approaches must demonstrate current and future social, behavioral, economic, health, and environmental impacts. Additionally, the outcomes of the work being proposed must result in societal benefits, including promotion of rural prosperity and enhancement of quality of life for those involved in food and agricultural value chains from production to utilization and consumption. See AFRI SAS RFA for details. Continue reading

NIFA Announces New Funding Opportunity for Sustainable Agricultural Systems

NIFA has announced the availability of up to $80 million in funding for integrated projects to increase sustainable production of food and agricultural products. Funding is made through a new program in NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)  Sustainable Agricultural Systems (SAS) program. AFRI is authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, which aims to address challenges in food, agriculture, natural resources, and human sciences. Continue reading

Researchers in Georgia and Florida testing new disease monitor for strawberries

In Georgia FACES

by Sharon Dowdy, University of Georgia

University of Georgia and University of Florida (UF) researchers are using weather monitors to combat diseases in strawberry fields.

The researchers are testing the Strawberry Advisory System (SAS) in Georgia strawberry fields. SAS, an app created, in part, by UF plant pathologist Natalia Peres, uses temperature and leaf moisture monitors to recommend when farmers should spray for Botrytis and anthracnose, two fungi that cause fruit rot on strawberries. Continue reading