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USDA Scientific Research Program Funds Sustainable Agricultural Systems Projects

Nifa Author
Kellie Burdette, Senior Communications Manager

Kansas City, MO - Today, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced a $90 million investment in research projects seeking to improve the sustainability of the nation’s food supply. 

The awards will support nine projects at eight institutions addressing issues including animal, human, plant and environmental health. This research investment is the second installment of a new program within NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative’s (AFRI) Sustainable Agricultural Systems program. AFRI is the nation’s leading and largest competitive grants program for agricultural sciences.   

“In an effort to help American farmers produce nutritious, high-quality products in a way that conserves natural resources and protects the environment, these projects will provide needed research to overcome critical barriers facing the industry,” said NIFA Director Scott Angle. “Investments in research that promotes sustainable systems will result in long-term improvements in agricultural practices that will benefit consumers, farmers, and the environment.”

Projects selected for funding range from improved practices in poultry production and food safety, to efficient water use, nutrient management, and improvements in the value chain of biofuel production.

“Ensuring sustainability across the agricultural landscape requires us to develop innovative practices in every segment of production and every portion of our environment,” Angle said.
This investment in these innovative sustainable agricultural practices supports USDA’s vision outlined in the USDA Science Blueprint and USDA’s Agriculture Innovation Agenda that Secretary Perdue announced earlier this year.

The eight institutions receiving awards are:

  • Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa - $10 million
  • University of California, Riverside, California - $10 million
  • University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut - $10 million
  • University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho - $10 million
  • University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland - $10 million
  • University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland - $10 million
  • University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota - $10 million
  • West Virginia University, Morgantown, West Virginia - $10 million
  • Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan - $9.8 million

Award grant details can be found on NIFA’s Current Research Information Systems (CRIS) website.

NIFA’s mission is to invest in and advance agricultural research, education, and extension to solve societal challenges. NIFA’s investments in transformative science directly support the long-term prosperity and global preeminence of U.S. agriculture. To learn more about NIFA’s impact on agricultural science, visit, sign up for email updates or follow us on Twitter#NIFAimpacts.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.



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