Research, Education & Extension


Organic Plant Breeding Research Grant Announced

December 3, 2014

As farmers across the country close down their market stands and prepare their fields for the coming winter, they have very important decisions to make for the coming year – including what crops to plant and what seeds to order for the next growing season. And just as consumers make important decisions about what type […]

Organic Food Starts with Organic Seeds!

November 21, 2014

This post is the second post in a blog series devoted to exploring the importance of seeds to sustainable food and farming systems.  Since everything starts with seeds, this series will focus on the importance of public seed research to sustainable agriculture, including organic farmers and local and regional food producers, as well as to […]

New Report Finds Farmers Harmed by Decline in Nation’s Public Seed Supply

October 31, 2014

Everything starts with seeds. Sustainable and organic agriculture and local food systems depends on this critical first building block.

Program Roundup – SARE Funding Available for On-Farm Research Projects

October 21, 2014

The Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program or SARE is a farmer driven research and education competitive grants program designed to help advance sustainable agriculture across the whole of American agriculture.  North Central, Northeastern, Western, and Southern regional councils — comprised of producers, researchers, educators, and government representatives — individually set SARE policies and make […]

Specialty Crop Research Initiative Grants Announced

October 3, 2014

On October 2, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced more than $51 million in awards from the Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI).  SCRI provides grants for regional research and extension projects to support producers of fruits, vegetables, nursery crops, and other specialty crops. This is the first time since 2012 that SCRI […]

Organic Farms Noteworthy in Many Ways According to USDA Census of Agriculture

October 2, 2014

On September 30, the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released more detailed organic agriculture data from the 2012 Census of Agriculture.  The basic Census information was published earlier this year.  The Census of Agriculture has been conducted since 1840 and currently is collected once every five years.  NSAC’s discussion of the first release, from May […]

USDA Announces $23 Million in Grants for Organic Research

September 30, 2014

On Monday, September 29, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced over $23 million in grants to support organic farming research.  The money was awarded through the Organic Research and Extension Initiative (OREI)—the flagship research competitive grants program dedicated to funding research relevant to organic producers—and the Organic […]

NSAC Joins Twenty-Eight Groups in Supporting Funding for AFRI

September 23, 2014

On Monday September 22, twenty-eight members of the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Coalition sent a letter to the leadership of the House and Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committees thanking them for the increase in funding for AFRI included in each of their Fiscal Year 2015 Agriculture Appropriations bills. The letter also requests their continued support […]

Congress Extends 2014 Funding Levels through December 11

September 19, 2014

On Thursday, September 18, the Senate passed a short-term funding extension, known as a “continuing resolution” (CR), to fund the federal government through December 11.  The CR extends fiscal year (FY) 2014 funding levels as well as policy provisions known as appropriations “riders.”  The House passed this temporary funding measure earlier this week, and the […]

New Report Identifies Changes Needed for USDA Agriculture Research

September 12, 2014

Earlier this week, the National Research Council (NRC) released a report calling for increased funding along with major changes to the Agriculture Food and Research Initiative — USDA’s largest agriculture research program. The report was commissioned by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), which is the federal agency responsible for awarding extramural research […]

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