National Pie Day is January 23, and what’s better than a warm, delicious dessert during these cold winter days?
Take a look at how the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture-funded research at Land-grant Universities supports the fresh fruit industry.
A Half-Century Effort: Impact of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture Fruit Breeding Program
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture Fruit Breeding Program began in 1964 with a broad mission of improving variety options for Arkansas fruit growers of blackberries, bunch grapes, peaches/nectarines, strawberries, and apples, with blueberries and muscadine grapes added in later years. The program, which has been supported by Hatch capacity funding, began with ambitious goals of releasing varieties with high quality and flavor, broad adaptation, disease resistance, a range of fruit maturity dates, and reliable cropping. Read more.
Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station: Enhancing the Sustainability of Selected Fruit Production Systems in the Southeast United States
Interest in tree fruit and other specialty fruit crop production has been increasing in Alabama. Selected fruit production systems in the Southeast, however, are constrained by a lack of knowledge concerning cultivar performance, nutritional requirements, and management strategies. Research funded by the NIFA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative focused on improving the sustainability of these emerging fruit crop industries. Read more.
Growing Together to Provide Access to Fresh Produce for Limited-Resource Indiana Residents
Growing Together, a North Central Extension Multi-State effort including Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, is a food access program to increase fresh fruit and vegetable availability to food pantries and other service agencies serving SNAP-eligible clients. Purdue Extension Master Gardeners in 14 Indiana counties were engaged with community partners and 359 volunteers to create or expand 21 donation gardens to meet the needs of limited-resource individuals and families. This program was supported by the NIFA Smith-Lever Act Capacity Grant. Read more.
Want some whipped cream and ice cream with your pie? Check out NIFA-funded dairy research here.