The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) has awarded $9.4 million to support 25 research and outreach projects that will help mitigate pests, weeds and diseases on farms and in communities. The awards are made through NIFA's Crop Protection and Pest Management Program (CPPM) and Integrated Pest Management program which have awarded more than $64.5 million since 2014.
"NIFA is making investments to ensure America's agriculture sector is able to rely on sound scientific approaches to increase production and ensure continued food security in the face of the many challenges including arthropod, weed and disease pests," says NIFA director Sonny Ramaswamy. "The Crop Protection and Pest Management Program has a history of developing new tools, best management practices and strategies for healthy crop systems while supporting communities with effective, affordable and environmentally sound solutions that reduce potential health risks."
A series of grants will be used by various schools for very specific projects.
- University of Minnesota - scout for soybean pests using unmanned aerial vehicles to read light waves reflected off the soybean foliage
- North Carolina State University - develop practices to improve growth and survival of urban trees
- Pennsylvania State University - adapt novel nanotube technology to make it possible to diagnose pest infections early and protect crops.
- Washington State University - develop integrated pest management strategies for the rapidly expanding U.S. hops industry.
Each grant, made possible by The Applied Research and Development Program Area, will be given in 2016 to the following institutions:
- Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colo., $324,517
- University of Georgia, Athens, Ga., $324,615
- Regents of the University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minn., $324,880
- Montana State University, Bozeman, Mont., $325,000
- Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., $324,856
- Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., $189,273
- North Carolina State University, Raleigh, N.C., $324,979
- North Carolina State University, Raleigh, N.C., $199,590
- Oregon State University, Corvallis, Ore., $215,460
- Pennsylvania State University, State College, Penn., $325,000
- Texas A&M AgriLife Research, College Station, Texas, $289,281
- University of Vermont and State Agricultural College, Burlington, Vt., $324,560
- Washington State University, Pullman, Wash., $324,983
- Washington State University, Pullman, Wash., $323,491
Details can be found at NIFA.USDA.gov.