Advanced SearchHomeAbout UsGrantsFormsNewsroomHelpContact Us
Search CSREES
Browse by Subject
Agricultural Systems
Animals & Animal Products
Biotechnology & Genomics
Economics & Commerce
Education
Families, Youth, & Communities
Food, Nutrition, & Health
International
Natural Resources & Environment
Pest Management
Plant & Plant Products
Technology & Engineering
You are here:Home / Newsroom / Newsletters / NIFA Updates / NIFA Update – August 29, 2012

NIFA Update — August 29, 2012

NIFA Update, from the Office of the Director, is a biweekly newsletter for research, education, and Extension partners at land-grant universities and other cooperating institutions.

NIFA

  • NIFA Visits With Embrapa Officials
  • NIFA’s Disaster Resilience in Rural Communities Program Hosts Webinars
  • NIFA Funding Produces Common Bean Genome Sequence
  • President of Montana State University to Give Seaman A. Knapp Memorial Lecture
  • NIFA in the News
  • NIFA Lists Open Requests for Grant Applications

 

USDA

  • Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces New Help for Livestock Producers with Changes to Emergency Loans, Crop Insurance
  • USDA Seeks Applications for Grants to Help Agricultural Producers Bring Increased Value to Their Products 
  • USDA Announces Low-Interest Emergency Loans to Producers Due to Drought 

Partners

  • University of Hawaii Appoints New Dean/Director
  • BGREEN—Building Regional Energy and Educational Alliances

 

Awards and Recognition

  • UT Extension Administrator Wins National 4-H Award from U.S. Air Force

  • Next issue of NIFA Update is September 12

NIFA Visits With Embrapa Officials

NIFA Deputy Director Ralph Otto recently met with a delegation from Embrapa (Brazil’s Agricultural Research Corporation), led by Vania Beatriz Castiglioni, executive director of Administration and Finance. Otto described NIFA programming activities to the delegation and was joined by Dr. Dionne Toombs, Director of NIFA’s Division of Nutrition; Adriene Woodin, branch chief in the Awards Management Division; and Dr. Hiram Larew, Director of the NIFA’s Center for International Programs. Contact Hiram Larew for more information about Embrapa’s visit.

NIFA’s Disaster Resilience in Rural Communities Program Hosts Webinars

NIFA will hold a series of webinars for the Disaster Resilience for Rural Communities (DRRC) program on Tuesday, September 11, and September 25, 2012, from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (EDT). The webinars are a part of the post-award management activities for the DRRC program. The goals are to disseminate research results, foster communication among awardees, and provide opportunities for new collaborations.

Discussion topics include reducing vulnerabilities in rural communities, community and economic disaster recovery, wildfire hazard planning, and mitigation and home-based disaster preparedness programs.  Here are the links for the September 11 and the September 25 webinars. Contact Dr. Suresh Sureshwaran, 202-720-7536, or Katrena R. Hanks, 202-401-5286, for more information on the webinars.

NIFA Funding Produces Common Bean Genome Sequence

The early release of Version 1.0 data of the common bean genome sequence is publicly available on Phytozome. The work was funded by NIFA and the research conducted by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service. This genome sequence information is another tool for breeders to improve common bean worldwide and contributes to USDA’s Feed the Future Initiative. These resources were combined with the U.S. Department of Energy-Joint Genome Institute and American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. This version can be accessed through Phytozome by selecting "Phaseolus vulgaris v1.0" in the "Early Release Genomes" section. 

President of Montana State University to Give Seaman A. Knapp Memorial Lecture

WASHINGTON, August 27 Sonny Ramaswamy, Director of USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), announced that Waded Cruzado, president of Montana State University, will present the 2012 Seaman A. Knapp Memorial Lecture in memory of “The Father of Extension,” Nov. 12 in Denver, Colo., at the annual meeting of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU).

The Seaman A. Knapp Lecture is one of three rotating lectures presented by NIFA and APLU honoring three historic Land-Grant University figures: Seaman A. Knapp, Justin Smith Morrill, and William Henry Hatch. Nominations for this prestigious award are submitted by the Land-Grant University System, stakeholders, foundations, public interest groups, and international organizations. Visit the NIFA Newsroom to read the full release.


NIFA in the News

 

NIFA Lists Open Requests for Grant Applications

Funding Opportunity

Closing Date

Contact

Higher Education Multicultural Scholars Program (MSP)

August 29, 2012

Ray A. Ali

Small Business Innovation Research: Biofuels and Biobased Products

September 13, 2012

William Goldner

Small Business Innovation Research: Forests and Related Resources

September 13, 2012

Charles F. Cleland

Small Business Innovation Research: Plant Production and Protection - Biology

September 13, 2012

Shing F. Kwok

Small Business Innovation Research Program: Engineering

September 6, 2012

William Goldner

Small Business Innovation Research: Food Science and Nutrition

September 13, 2012

Jodi Williams

Small Business Innovation Research: Rural Development

September 13, 2012

Siva Sureshwaran

Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR)

September 13, 2012

Charles F. Cleland

Small Business Innovation Research Program: Phase I

September 13, 2012

Charles F. Cleland

Small Business Innovation Research: Small and Mid-Size Farms

September 13, 2012

Charles F. Cleland

Small Business Innovation Research: Air, Water, and Soils

September 13, 2012

Mary Ann Rozum

Small Business Innovation Research: Animal Production and Protection

September 13, 2012

Adele Turzillo

Small Business Innovation Research: Aquaculture

September 13, 2012

Gary Jensen

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Dual Purpose with Dual Benefit: Research in Biomedicine and Agriculture Using Agriculturally Important Domestic Species

September 20, 2012

Mark A. Mirando

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Food Safety

December 5, 2012

Jeanette Thurston

Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases

December 5, 2012

Peter Johnson

 

NIFA advertises all of its funding opportunities through “Find Grant Opportunities” on the Grants.gov website. This site is searchable and contains summary information on all federal funding opportunities with links to the full announcements. Users can search announcements by topic, funding agency, and date, as well as subscribe to an email notification service based on these parameters.

Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces New Help for Livestock Producers with Changes to Emergency Loans, Crop Insurance

WASHINGTON, August 22 Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made a series of announcements that continue to underscore the Obama Administration's ongoing work to help farmers, ranchers, and businesses impacted by the most severe drought in 50 years. The Secretary said the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) intends to file special provisions with the federal crop insurance program to allow haying or grazing of cover crops without impacting the insurability of planted 2013 spring crops, a move that can help provide much needed forage and feed this fall and winter for livestock producers. In a separate step, Vilsack will modify emergency loans, allowing loans to be made earlier in the season helping livestock producers to offset increased feed costs and those who have liquidated herds.

Vilsack also designated 33 additional counties in 8 states as natural disaster areas—23 counties due to drought. In the past 6 weeks, USDA has designated 1,821 counties in 35 states as disaster areas—1,692 due to drought—while USDA officials have fanned out to more than a dozen drought-affected states as part of a total U.S. government effort to offer support and assistance to those impacted by the drought. Visit the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.

USDA Seeks Applications for Grants to Help Agricultural Producers Bring Increased Value to Their Products 

WASHINGTON, August 16 Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack invited agricultural producers to apply for grants to increase the value of their products. Applicants have until October 15, 2012, to apply. Vilsack emphasized that far too many producers are missing out on significant economic opportunities when their products are enhanced further away from the farm.

USDA Rural Development is making up to $14 million in grants available for projects that help farmers and ranchers produce bio-based products from agricultural commodities. The grants, which are competitively awarded, are available for planning activities or for working capital expenses, but not for both. The maximum grant amount is $100,000 for planning grants and $300,000 for working capital grants. Generating new products, creating and expanding marketing opportunities and increasing producer income are the goals of the program. For information on how to apply, see page 48951 of the August 15, 2012, Federal Register. Visit the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.

USDA Announces Low-Interest Emergency Loans to Producers Due to Drought 

WASHINGTON, August 15 – As part of continuing steps by the Obama Administration to get assistance to producers impacted by the drought, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack designated 172 additional counties in 15 states as primary natural disaster areas due to drought and heat, making all qualified farm operators in the areas eligible for low-interest emergency loans.

President Obama and Secretary Vilsack traveled to Iowa to announce USDA's intent to purchase up to $170 million of pork, lamb, chicken, and catfish for federal food nutrition assistance programs, including food banks, which will help relieve pressure on American livestock producers and bring the nation's meat supply in line with demand.

Vilsack also announced the availability of up to $5 million in grants to evaluate and demonstrate agricultural practices that help farmers and ranchers adapt to drought. USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is taking applications for Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) to help producers build additional resiliency into their production systems. Visit www.nrcs.usda.gov for more information. Go to the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.

University of Hawaii Appoints New Dean/Director

Dr. Maria Gallo was recently named dean of the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and Director of the Agriculture Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service. Gallo earned her bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Cornell University, and her master’s and Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in crop science and genetics, respectively. Her contact information is: Dean and Director, College of Tropical Agriculture & Human Resources, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, 3050 Maile Way, Gilmore 202, Honolulu, HI 96822, Phone: 808-956-8234, Fax: 808-956-9105.

BGREEN—Building Regional Energy and Educational Alliances

BGREEN—Building Regional Energy and Educational Alliances is one of seven Collaboration Grants awarded by NIFA’s Hispanic-Serving Institutions Grants Program in 2011. BGREEN was created as a network for sustainable energy research, educators, USDA agencies, and nonprofit organizations to coordinate efforts and increase educational and post-graduate opportunities for Hispanic students pursuing careers in sustainable energy and agriculture research. New Mexico State, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Texas State University-San Marcos, and the University of Texas-El Paso are collaborating to promote sustainable energy for the BGGREEN program.

Three New Mexico State University students spent 3 months this summer in the BGREEN program doing hands-on work in fields and laboratories. They measured light and soil conditions in acres covered with switch grass, canola, and energy cane – plants that produce biofuels with little water and agricultural labor. The students entered their findings into modeling software for further analysis. This opportunity opened their eyes to other post-graduate studies, became more motivated to learn about the “green energy” movement and conservation, and saw the practical applications to what they learned in the classroom. The project advisor was impressed with the work, dedication, and enthusiasm the students showed. BGREEN is benefitting the students, educators, and the researchers.

UT Extension Administrator Wins National 4-H Award from U.S. Air Force

Dr. Joseph Donaldson, University of Tennessee Extension administrator, is being honored for his service to 4-H with a prestigious national award. Donaldson is the winner of the U.S. Air Force Recruiting Salute Award from the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents (NAE4-H). He will accept the award at the organization’s meeting in Orlando, FL, on October 25. Donaldson was selected as Tennessee’s nominee by its 150 NAE4-H members, was then selected the national winner among the 50 states. The award is based on professional accomplishments and recognizes individuals who create a positive image for 4-H and serve as a mentor to youth. He is honored for providing leadership and evaluation resources to 4-H. This is the third straight year Tennessee 4-H has won this national award.

The next NIFA issue is planned for September 12. Submit news items to: newsletter@nifa.usda.gov by September 6. If you have questions about Update, please contact the Editor: Judy Rude, public affairs specialist, NIFA Communications Staff.

To subscribe or unsubscribe to this newsletter, please send an e-mail message to Judy Rude. In the body of the message, type: subscribe nifa-update OR unsubscribe nifa-update. Back issues of NIFA Update are available on the NIFA website.


Sonny Ramaswamy, Director


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at 202-720-2600 (voice and TDD). To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call 800-795-3272 (voice) or 202-720-6382 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Questions? Comments? Last Updated: 08/29/2012