Thursday, October 20, 2011

USDA Awards $46 Million to Specialty Crops Projects

The USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture has awarded 29 grants across 19 states in Specialty Crops Research to develop and share science-based tools to address the needs of the specialty crop industry.

The entire list of awards and projects can be found here.

Some of the projects include:
  • Developing an inexpensive, accurate, easy-to-use biosensor for the detection of Salmonella contamination of fresh globe fruits (tomatoes, cantaloupes and watermelons) - Auburn University
  • Developing biorenewable and biodegradable containers as a greener alternative to the petroleum-based pots used in the container specialty crop industry - Iowa State University
  • Identifying and developing improved basil varieties with resistance/tolerance to downy mildew, Fusarium wilt and chilling-injury - Rutgers University
  • Advancing the productivity and profitability of U.S. fruiting vegetable enterprises by integrating grafting technologies into tomato and melon production systems - NC State University
  • Improving the long-term viability of the fresh U.S. grown mushroom industry by marketing mushrooms as an excellent source of Vitamin D - St. Joseph's University

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