California shares in nearly $15 million for plant health and resilience research

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded more than $14.5 million in grants to support research into plant health, production and resilience, including more than $1 million to institutions in California. These grants were made through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Foundational program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill and administered by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

Established by the 2008 Farm Bill and re-authorized in the 2014 Farm Bill, AFRI is the nation’s premier competitive, peer-reviewed grants program for fundamental and applied agricultural sciences. In the seven years since AFRI was established, the program has led to true innovations and ground-breaking discoveries in agriculture to combat childhood obesity, improve and sustain rural economic growth, address water availability issues, increase food production, find new sources of energy, mitigate the impacts of climate variability and enhance resiliency of our food systems, and ensure food safety.

The grants were awarded through AFRI’s Plant Health and Production and Plant Products (PHPPP) area, which supports basic and applied research in the following areas: understanding plant-associated microorganisms and plant-microbe interactions; controlling weedy and invasive plants; and plant-associated insects and nematodes.

Understanding Plant-Associated Microorganisms and Plant-Microbe Interactions:

  • University of Arizona, Tucson, Ariz., $483,700
  • University of California, Riverside, Calif., $500,000
  • USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Fort Collins, Colo., $472,400
  • University of Delaware, Newark, Del., $499,830
  • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Ill., $499,938
  • Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kan., $500,000
  • North Dakota State University, Fargo, N.D., $150,000
  • Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., $499,980
  • Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, $499,970
  • Oregon State University, Corvallis, Ore., $498,780
  • Oregon State University, Corvallis, Ore., $15,000 (conference)
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, $499,990
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, $498,310
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va., $15,000

Descriptions of these projects are available on the NIFA reporting website.

Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants:

  • Arizona State University, Tempe, Ariz., $500,000
  • Chapman University, Orange, Calif., $69,178
  • Wichita State University, Wichita, Kan., $430,882
  • USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Stoneville, Miss., $500,000
  • Montana State University, Bozeman, Mont., $158,744
  • Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., $272,078
  • Oregon State University, Corvallis, Ore., $500,000
  • Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, $500,000
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, $500,000
  • University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyo., $500,000

Descriptions of these projects are available on the NIFA reporting website.

Plant-Associated Insects and Nematodes:

  • University of California, Berkeley, Calif., $454,000
  • USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Athens, Ga., $480,000
  • University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky., $468,527
  • Montana State University, Bozeman, Mont., $385,100
  • University of New Hampshire, Durham, N.C., $149,800
  • North Dakota State University, Fargo, N.D., $133,000
  • Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research, Ithaca, N.Y., $379,000
  • New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Geneva, N.Y., $499,900
  • Gordon Research Conference, West Kingston, R.I., $15,000 (conference)
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, $499,500
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, $454,000
  • University of Houston, Houston, Texas, $150,000
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va., $500,000
  • University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisc., $485,000
  • USDA Forest Service, Madison, Wisc., $15,000 (conference)

Descriptions of these projects are available on the NIFA reporting website.

To date, PHPPP has awarded more than $68 million to further progress and solve challenges in plant production through research, education, and extension.

Link to full news release

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