APHIS Holds Webinars to Help Tribal Nations Interested in Seeking Farm Bill Section 10007 Funding to Support Plant Pest and Disease Management Projects

The Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 open period for submitting funding suggestions to the 2014 Farm Bill began on July 10, 2017, and will continue until August 18, 2017. The United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) will hold two help sessions in July for our Tribal Partners who want to know more about submitting suggestions. Both ‘Suggestion Help Session’ webinars will give you details for submitting suggestions to implement activities under the Plant Pest and Disease Management and Disaster Prevention Program of the 2014 Farm Bill. Continue reading

USDA Announces $7.2 Million for Research on Plant-Biotic Interactions

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 10 grants totaling $7.2 million for research on the interactions of plants, microbes, and invertebrates. This is the first round of grants awarded through the Plant-Biotic Interactions program, a joint funding opportunity established through a partnership between NIFA and the National Science Foundation (NSF). The NIFA funding is made possible through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“The research to be supported by these grants will help reveal the mechanisms that govern how plants interact with the world around them,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “The expectation is that NIFA investments will result in tools for growers to help plants thrive in the face of pest and environmental constraints, along with other challenges.”  Continue reading

Wisconsin pallet maker fined for environmental fraud

Russel Wetenkamp, site manager for Timber Creek Resource in Wisconsin, pled guilty and was sentenced in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Wisconsin to criminal violations related to the Plant Protection Act (PPA).

Wetenkamp fraudulently marked wooden pallets indicating that they were compliant with the regulations under the PPA that govern the use of wood packaging material in international trade even though they had not been properly treated to prevent the spread of wood-boring pests.  Continue reading

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Regional Host Institution

The purpose of the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program is to encourage research and outreach designed to increase knowledge concerning agricultural production systems that:

  1. maintain and enhance the quality and productivity of the soil;
  2. conserve soil, water, energy, natural resources, and fish and wildlife habitat;
  3. maintain and enhance the quality of surface and ground water;
  4. protect the health and safety of persons involved in the food and farm system;
  5. promote the well-being of animals; and
  6. increase employment opportunities in agriculture (7 U.S.C. 5801 and 5811).

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APHIS Announces Open Period Dates for Fiscal Year 2018 Farm Bill 10007

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced today the dates of the fiscal year (FY) 2018 open period for submitting suggestions to implement Plant Pest and Disease Management and Disaster Prevention Programs of the 2014 Farm Bill. The FY 2018 open period will last six weeks from July 10, 2017, through August 18, 2017. There will be $75 million available with at least $5 million going to the National Clean Plant Network (NCPN). The open period for submitting NCPN project suggestions will be announced separately. Continue reading

NIFA Seeks Partners for SARE National Coordinating Office and Regional Hosts

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced a new competitive opportunity to serve as the National Reporting, Coordination and Communications Office or as one of the four regional Host Institutions for the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (SARE).

SARE’s four regions offer competitive grants for farmers and ranchers, researchers, agricultural educators, and graduate students in the United States. Grants invest in applied research and education on the core components of sustainable agriculture: productivity, profitability, environmental stewardship and quality of life. In particular, research and outreach projects seek to increase knowledge of sustainable agricultural production systems that increase employment opportunities and profitability in agriculture; maintain soil quality, conserve water, natural resources, and wildlife habitat; preserve the quality of surface and ground water; protect the health and safety of people involved in the food and farm system; and promote the well-being of farm animals. Continue reading

USDA Invests $7.6 Million for Research on Pests and Beneficial Species

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 21 grants totaling $7.6 million for research to help manage pests and beneficial species that affect agricultural crops. The funding is made possible through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“There continues to be a critical need to develop new ways to defend our crops against pests,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “NIFA investments will also help to develop better strategies to foster the beneficial insects and microbes that have potential to combat pests.” Continue reading