USDA Invests $17.7 Million in Plant Health and Production Workforce

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 54 grants totaling more than $17.7 million for plant research that helps optimize crop production, mitigate disease, and increase yield. The funding is made possible through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“Plants are the foundation of diet for both humans and animals,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “It is imperative to invest in research to stay ahead of the biological and environmental constraints, and develop new technologies to produce a secure, nutritious food supply for a growing population.” Continue reading

The war on the boll weevil

by Dominic Reisig, NC State University

In NC State University News

The boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) is not much to look at – just a grayish, little beetle with an impressively long snout. But this particular beetle, and its hunger for cotton, was powerful enough to forge an unprecedented partnership between farmers, legislators and scientists. And that partnership showed how much can be accomplished when scientists and farmers work together.

What adult boll weevils lack in size they make up for with their larvae’s ability to feed on and destroy cotton. Boll weevils entered the U.S. from Mexico in the late 1800s, when they were first spotted in Texas. By the 1920s they had spread through all of the major cotton-producing areas in the country. The scope of the damage was breathtaking, as were the control efforts thrown at this insect: at one time, one-third of the insecticide used in the U.S. was used to combat boll weevils. Continue reading

Competitive Funding Opportunity Webinar

Join us for the USDA NIFA Competitive Funding Opportunity Webinar

This webinar provides an overview of the USDA NIFA competitive grant programs in order to enhance the application success rate of eligible institutions. The 2-part informational webinar is meant to enhance the application success rate of all, with a focus on tips for minority serving institutions, is divided into:

  • Session I (11 a.m.-12 p.m. EDT); and
  • Session II (1-2pm EDT).

Continue reading

USDA Invests $17.5 Million for Resilient Rural Communities and a Sustainable Agriculture Economy

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 47 grants totaling nearly $17.5 million to improve sustainable agriculture and help rural communities thrive. The funding is made possible through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“A number of factors are involved in achieving economic success in rural communities,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “These NIFA investments will help us understand the social and behavioral factors that inform decision-making in agriculture, which can help rural communities thrive.” Continue reading

Renewable Resources Extension Act-National Focus Fund Projects (RREA-NFF)

The purpose of the grant program is to provide funds for pilot projects that: (1) Address emerging forest and rangeland resource issues, (2) Have national or regional relevancy, or (3) Develop new and innovative projects that can be replicated at other institutions.

Who is eligible to apply:

1862 Land-Grant Institutions, 1890 Land-Grant Institutions

Request for Applications Continue reading

You’re Invited…2017 Competitive Funding Opportunity Workshop Webinar

The workshops are designed to assist both new and veteran applicants with optimizing their chances of successfully competing in a peer-reviewed grant application process. Writing an effective grant application takes hard work, practice, and skill to communicate science ideas into a successfully funded peer-reviewed grant award. Continue reading

APHIS Adds Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, and Will Counties, Illinois, to the Gypsy Moth (Lymantria dispar) Regulated Area

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is adding Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, and Will Counties in Illinois to the list of regulated areas for the gypsy moth (GM). The GM population in each of these counties has reached the threshold to trigger the regulated area.

To prevent the further spread of GM, the attached Federal Order establishes Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, and Will Counties in Illinois as regulated areas. Effective immediately, all interstate movement of GM-regulated articles from Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, and Will Counties must be handled in accordance with the attached Federal Order. Illinois has established a parallel state quarantine. Continue reading