Research, Education & Extension


Bare Minimum, Last Minute

October 8, 2020

Last Wednesday night with only a few hours to spare, Congress did what many observers and advocates for months had been citing as inevitable. They sent an appropriations Continuing Resolution (CR) to the President’s desk that puts off final decisions about Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 spending until after the November general election. The CR ensures […]

$22.6 Million Awarded to Support Organic Farming, Research

September 24, 2020

Research underpins the success of every farm – not least of all for organic agriculture. Cutting-edge innovations and science-based studies continue to advance this multi-billion dollar industry, at times with funding from the federal government. The National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) recently announced over $20 million in research investments to support organic farmers […]

Calling all Researchers! Nearly $300 million in Ag Research Funding Now Available!

September 8, 2020

USDA recently announced over $290 million in research grant funding through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative – including funding for research on plant breeding, local and regional food systems, beginning farmers, farmers of color, and the impact of COVID-19 on our farmers and the food supply chain.

Do Cover Crops Help Farmers Save Costs?

September 3, 2020

After decades of research, cover crops have been widely shown to be beneficial to crop yields, soil health, and farmers’ bottom lines. However, many obstacles to cover crop adoption still remain – including start-up costs and the amount of time before benefits are seen.

Regional and Long-Term Agricultural Research Build Climate Resilience

July 16, 2020

Editor’s Note: This is the fifth blog in a series focusing on specific provisions included in the Agriculture Resilience Act (ARA) introduced by Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) in February 2020. The ARA represents the first comprehensive piece of legislation introduced in the House of Representatives addressing climate change and agriculture. Read blogs one, two, three, […]

Will $90 Million in Funding Hit the Mark for Sustainable Ag?

July 8, 2020

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) has announced its 2019 awardees of its $90 million flagship Sustainable Agriculture Systems (SAS) program. First announced in 2018, the SAS program specifically focuses on systemic approaches to the challenges facing sustainable food production. As part of the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative’s (AFRI) offering, SAS’s second […]

USDA Announces New COVID Rapid Response Research Program

April 23, 2020

The nation’s food system and agriculture supply chains have been upended by the COVID-19 pandemic. Significant impacts are being felt across the entire food and agriculture sector including the reduction in operation of restaurants, farmers markets, processing and packaging facilities, to name a few. Farmers and ranchers have voiced the strong need for intervention to […]

New 2020 Organic Survey: Assessing Research, Education and Outreach Needs to Meet the Growing Demand for Organic Products

April 16, 2020

Organic farmers have seen tremendous growth in the organic sector as demand continues to rise. Despite this market opportunity, organic and transitioning organic farmers still face numerous challenges. Research, like that funded through the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) program spearheaded by the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA), is being conducted to help […]

National Cover Crop Farmer Survey Now Underway!

April 7, 2020

After decades of research, cover crops have been widely shown to be beneficial to crop yields, soil health, and farmers’ bottom lines. However, many obstacles to cover crop adoption still remain – including start-up costs and the amount of time before benefits are seen. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education […]

A Plea for Food and Agriculture Research Funding

April 2, 2020

Federal funding for food and agriculture public research has stagnated for decades, declining in real terms even while other federal agencies have seen their budgets trend steadily upward and even while China has long since overtaken the US as the major public investor in the sector. Yet, our food and agricultural system is a key […]

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