10/06/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 10/06/2021 08:43
WASHINGTON, Oct. 6, 2021 - U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today an investment of more than $146 million in sustainable agricultural research projects aimed at improving a robust, resilient, climate-smart food and agricultural system.
This investment is made under the National Institute of Food and Agriculture's (NIFA) Sustainable Agricultural Systems program. This innovative program focuses on a broad base of needed research solutions from addressing labor challenges and promoting land stewardship to correcting climate change impacts in agriculture and critical needs in food and nutrition.
"USDA is tackling urgent challenges facing American agriculture and communities across our nation. Critical issues like food insecurity, drought resilience and response, animal disease prevention, and market disruption requires investments to help meet these challenges. This is the time for agriculture, forestry, and rural communities to act. Together we can lead the way with investments in science and research and climate-smart solutions that feed and nourish families, improve the profitability and resilience of producers, improve forest health, while creating new income opportunities, and building wealth that stays in rural communities," said Secretary Vilsack.
This investment is part the third installment of NIFA grants within its Agriculture and Food Research Initiative's (AFRI) Sustainable Agricultural Systems program designed to improve plant and animal production and sustainability, and human and environmental health. AFRI is the nation's leading and largest competitive grants program for agricultural sciences. These grants are available to eligible colleges, universities and other research organizations.
"Investments in research projects likes these awarded today will result in long-term improvements in agricultural practices that will benefit consumers, farmers and the environment," said NIFA Director Dr. Carrie Castille. "It takes an inclusive systems approach to tackle these major issues. We are excited to see impacts this research investment will generate for our nation to move us towards solutions that benefit all Americans."
Examples of the 15 projects funded under the AFRI Sustainable Agriculture Systems projects include:
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America's food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, ensuring access to healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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