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Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)

AFRI
Number: 10.310
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Office: National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Program Information 

Program Number/Title (010):
10.310 Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)
Federal Agency (030):
National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Department of Agriculture
Authorization (040):
Competitive, Special and Facilities Research Grant Act, Section 2(2)(b), [7 U.S.C. 450i]., 7 U.S.C 450i.
Objectives (050):
To establish a competitive grants program to provide funding for fundamental and applied research, extension, and education to address food and agricultural sciences.
Types of Assistance (060):
Project Grants
Uses and Use Restrictions (070):
Grant funds must be used for allowable costs necessary to conduct approved fundamental and applied research, extension and education objectives to address food and agricultural sciences. The competitive grants program shall address the following areas:
A) Plant health and production and plant products;
B) Animal health and production and animal products;
C) Food safety, nutrition, and health;
D) Renewable energy, natural resources, and environment;
E) Agriculture systems and technology; and
F) Agriculture economics and rural communities.

Funds shall not be used for the construction of a new building or facility or the acquisition, expansion, remodeling, or alteration of an existing building or facility (including site grading and improvement, and architect fees). Funds may not be used for any purposes other than those approved in the grant award documents. Funds shall not be used for the construction of a new building or facility or the acquisition, expansion, remodeling, or alteration of an existing building or facility (including site grading and improvement, and architect fees). Funds may not be used for any purposes other than those approved in the grant award documents. Indirect cost is not allowable if awarded as an equipment, conference, or post-doc fellowship grant. Section 720 of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2012 (Pub.L. No. 112-55) limits indirect costs to 30 percent of the total Federal funds provided under each award. Therefore, when preparing budgets, applicants should limit their requests for recovery of indirect costs to the lesser of their institution’s official negotiated indirect cost rate or the equivalent of 30 percent of total Federal funds awarded. Special Note on Indirect Costs as in-kind matching contributions: Indirect costs may be claimed under the Federal portion of the award budget or, alternatively, indirect costs may be claimed as a matching contribution (if no indirect costs are requested under the Federal portion of the award budget). However, unless explicitly authorized in the RFA, indirect costs may not be claimed on both the Federal portion of the award budget and as a matching contribution, unless the total claimed on both the Federal portion of the award budget and as a matching contribution does not exceed the maximum allowed indirect costs or the institution’s negotiated indirect cost rate, whichever is less. An awardee may split the allocation between the Federal and non-Federal portions of the budget only if the total amount of indirect costs charged to the project does not exceed the maximum allowed indirect costs or the institution’s negotiated indirect cost rate, whichever is less. For example, if an awardees' indirect costs are capped at 30 percent pursuant to FY 2012 appropriated funds, Section 720 of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2012 (Division A of Pub. L. 112-55), the awardee may request 15 percent of the indirect costs on both the Federal portion of the award and as a matching contribution. Or, the awardee may request any similar percentage that, when combined, does not exceed the maximum indirect cost rate of 30 percent. Fully discretionary.
Eligibility Requirements (080)
Applicant Eligibility (081):
This initiative supports integrated and non-integrated programs. Please refer to Part III, A of the current Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Request for Applications for the complete eligibility requirements.
Beneficiary Eligibility (082):
This initiative supports integrated and non-integrated programs. Please refer to Part III, A of the current Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Request for Applications (RFA) for the complete eligibility requirements.
Credentials/Documentation (083):
No Credentials or documentation are required. OMB Circular No. A-87 applies to this program.
Application and Award Process (090)
Preapplication Coordination (091):
All RFAs are published on the Agency’s website and Grants.gov. Applicants must complete the Grants.gov registration process. Please see the following Grants.gov link for more information: http://www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp. An environmental impact statement is required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedures (092):
OMB Circular No. A-102 applies to this program. OMB Circular No. A-110 applies to this program. Applications should be submitted as outlined in the RFA. Applications must follow the instructions provided per Grants.Gov and in the Agency guide to submitting applications via Grants.gov. This information collection is approved under OMB Control No. 0524-0039, “CSREES Application Kit for Research and Extension Programs.”
Award Procedure (093):
Applications are subjected to a system of peer and merit review in accordance with section 103 of the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 (7 U.S.C. 7613) by a panel of qualified scientists and other appropriate persons who are specialists in the field covered by the proposal. Within the limit of funds available for such purpose, the NIFA Authorized Departmental Officer (ADO) shall make grants to those responsible, eligible applicants whose applications are judged most meritorious under the procedures set forth in the RFA. This information collection is approved under OMB Control No. 0524-0039, “CSREES Application Kit for Research and Extension Programs. Reviewers will be selected based upon training and experience in relevant scientific, extension, or education fields, taking into account the following factors: (a) The level of relevant formal scientific, technical education, or extension experience of the individual, as well as the extent to which an individual is engaged in relevant research, education, or extension activities; (b) the need to include as reviewers experts from various areas of specialization within relevant scientific, education, or extension fields; (c) the need to include as reviewers other experts (e.g., producers, range or forest managers/operators, and consumers) who can assess relevance of the applications to targeted audiences and to program needs;
(d) the need to include as reviewers experts from a variety of organizational types (e.g., colleges, universities, industry, state and Federal agencies, private profit and non-profit organizations) and geographic locations; (e) the need to maintain a balanced composition of reviewers with regard to minority and female representation and an equitable age distribution; and (f) the need to include reviewers who can judge the effective usefulness to producers and the general public of each application.
Deadlines (094):
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time (095):
Dates for specific deadlines are announced in the RFA each fiscal year. Range from 30 to 180 days.
Appeals (096):
Not Applicable.
Renewals (097):
Not Applicable.
Assistance Consideration (100)
Formula and Matching Requirements (101):
This program has no statutory formula.
Matching Requirements: Percent: 50.%. Funds are awarded competitively. No formula grants are awarded under this authority. For equipment grants – Unless criteria is met to qualify for waiver by the Secretary, matching shall not exceed 50 percent of the cost of the special research equipment or other equipment acquired using funds from the grant. For applied research – if the grant is commodity-specific; and not of national scope, the grant recipient is required to match USDA funds awarded on a dollar-for-dollar basis from non-Federal sources with cash and/or in-kind contributions.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance (102):
The term of a competitive grant under this program may not exceed ten (10) years. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: by letter of credit.
Post Assistance Requirements (110)
Reports (111):
Grantees are to submit initial project information and annual summary reports to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects. The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions. NIFA uses the SF-425, Federal Financial Report to monitor cash. Grantees are to submit initial project information and annual summary reports to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects. The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions. Quarterly “Reports of Federal Cash Transactions” (SF-272) are required by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) (www.dpm.psc.gov) and are submitted online through the DHHS Payment Management System (PMS) website. If you become delinquent in these reports, you will not be able to access your funds.

A final “Financial Status Report” (SF-269) or "Federal Financial Report" (SF-425) is due within 90 days of the expiration date of the grant and should be submitted to the address listed below, in accordance with instructions contained in 2 CFR 3430.55 (also refer to Section 3015.82 of the Uniform Federal Assistance Regulations).

Awards Management Division (AMD)
Office of Grants and Financial Management (OGFM)
National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
STOP 2271
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20250-2271
Telephone: (202) 401-4986. Grantees are to submit initial project information and annual summary reports to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects. The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions.
Audits (112):
In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133.
Records (113):
In accordance with the Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and other Non-profit Organizations [2 CFR 215, Subpart C, Section 215.53, (OMB Circular A-110)] grantees shall maintain separate records for each grant to ensure that funds are used for authorized purposes. Grant-related records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and must be retained at least three (3) years. Records must be retained beyond the three-year period if litigation is pending or audit findings have not been resolved.
Financial Information (120)
Obligations (122):
(Project Grants) FY 13 $254,067,676; FY 14 est $291,776,581; and FY 15 est $300,381,372 - The difference between the appropriation and obligation numbers reflects legislative authorized set-asides deducted as appropriate, and in some cases the availability of obligational authority from prior years.

This program represents no year funds. Represents new 2012 funds only. Does not include carryover.

These funds are no-year.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance (123):
Minimum and maximum amounts of funding per grant are established by the annual program announcement or RFA.
Program Accomplishments (130):
Fiscal Year 2013: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE

For FY 2013, a single program, Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Agriculture was competed for a total program budget of $6 million. In FY 2013 the program considered projects that involve one or more of the three functions; research, education and extension, that focus on adaptive management to weather and climate. Priority issues to be addressed include:
1. Understanding the Biophysical Basis for Adaptation.
2. Develop and Evaluate Tools and Management Practices to Aid Adaptation.
3. Social, Behavioral and Economics Aspects of Adaptive Management.

Funds totaling $28,392,521 were provided by AFRI to fund continuation awards made in 2010-2012.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For the FY 2013 award cycle, $22,995,748 was awarded in the Food Security Challenge Area. The Food Security Challenge Area included two programs that received a total of 91 applications. Three diverse peer review panels reviewed the submitted applications, and a total of 12 applications were funded. In addition, 22 continuing supplements were given to awards initially funded as continuation awards in previous years. Five conferences were awarded in one program that dealt exclusively with conferences and had a success rate of 20.8%. Seven integrated awards were funded in the other program with a success rate of 10.4%. The Food Security funds were used to support research, education, and extension efforts in the following areas: Conferences or Workshops on the topic of food security and large, integrated projects that covered topics relating to minimizing losses from the production of crops and livestock.


(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

In FY 2013 there was a combined 2012/2013 Food Safety Challenge Area RFA released. Approximately $6 million were available to fund new awards from the combined RFA. In addition, $14,993,174 was available to fund continuation awards.

(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2013, a modified RFA was released on January 24, 2013 and proposals were received by April 3, 2013. Seventeen AFRI Regional Bioenergy Feedstock Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP) integrated proposals, 4 conference proposals, and 9 seed grant proposals were received and are being reviewed. A single CAP award was made to Colorado State University, along with 2 conference and one seed grant totaling $2 M. Funding for continuation awards, including 6 Sustainable Bioenergy, and the Loblolly Pine Genome Sequencing coordinated agricultural projects were made, totaling ~ $30 M. 6 Standard Research grants in the area of water implications of regional bioenergy systems totally $3 M were also made.

The AFRI Sustainable Bioenergy Program funded grants that target vital topical areas related to the development of regional systems for the sustainable production of bioenergy, biopower and biobased products. These programs will, where appropriate, align with existing Regional Bioenergy Coordinated Agricultural Projects (CAP) to promote NIFA’s goal and mission of economic, environmental, and rural community sustainability.

Demand for biomass continues to increase as additional targets for heat, transportation fuels, power, and biobased products are realized. Current policies are designed to provide agricultural support, rural enhancement, reduced dependence on foreign sources of energy, climate change mitigation/adaptation, and environmental sustainability. Policy developments often are identified as drivers of production decisions in the biofuels and bioenergy industries. New policies will need to take into full account associated risks/uncertainties and unintended consequences of feedstock production systems on natural resource and ecosystem service sustainability. Research is not well developed around the implications of current and alternative regulatory policies, fuel and portfolio standards, market distorting and other production subsidies, tax credits, and agricultural assistance programs on both bioenergy and agricultural markets and production decisions, which are subject to further evaluations of environmental and other indirect effects.

To meet these identified needs, the long-term outcome for this program is to implement regional systems that materially deliver liquid transportation biofuels to help meet the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007 goal of 36 billion gallons/year of biofuels by 2022 and reduce the National dependence on foreign oil and, as appropriate, produce biopower and biobased products. Projects are expected to employ a systems approach to address the stated Program Area Priorities which collectively contribute to the achievement of the following goals:

1. Deployment of superior genotypes of regionally-appropriate dedicated energy crops.
2. Refinement and implementation of sustainable regional feedstock production practice.
3. Seamless feedstock logistics.
4. Scalable, sustainable conversion technologies that can accept a diverse range of feedstocks.
5. Regional marketing and distribution systems.
6. Regional sustainability analyses, data collection and management, and tools to support decision-making.
7. A well trained workforce with the capacity to fill the cross-disciplinary needs of the biofuels industry.

In FY 2010 and 2012 the NIFA solicitation resulted in the establishment of six Regional Bioenergy CAPs that focus on dedicated energy crops including energy cane, perennial grasses, sorghum, woody biomass, and oil crops (oilseeds and algae). These sustainable crops serve as feedstocks for the production of advanced non-ethanol, infrastructure-compatible fuels and biobased products through a systems-oriented approach that links feedstock development, production, logistics, conversion and markets. NIFA supports programs that are trans-disciplinary and integrate genetic crop development; sustainable agronomic and silvicultural practices; pest and beneficial species management; coordinated energy-efficient logistics; flexible and scaleable sustainable conversion and refining technologies; effective marketing and distribution systems; provide sustainable ecosystem services and rural community prosperity.

(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

In FY 2013, NIFA received 351 proposals. 56 award recommendations were executed. The success rate for the program was ~14.8%. Applications addressed the development of technical and functional competence for predoctoral students, and the research independence and teaching credentials of postdoctoral scientists in the agriculture, forestry, and food sciences that are within NIFA’s challenge and foundational program areas through well-developed and highly interactive mentoring and training activities.

(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For the FY 2013 award cycle, approximately $5,000,000 was available for project grant awards.

Fifty-seven applications requesting a total of $199,391,804 were received in this year’s competition. In September 2013, a 12-member peer review panel evaluated these applications. The peer panel includes faculty from 1862 and 1890 land grant universities, private universities, USDA-EPSCoR states, and small and mid-sized universities.

Funds were available to support research, education and extension efforts for one standard award and two strengthening awards that addressed the childhood obesity prevention program.

The funding ratio for this program in FY12 was 5%.

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2013 AFRI Foundational award cycle, a budget of $136,000,000 is available to fund proposals submitted to the AFRI Foundational Program solicitation. Maximum award size is $500,000.
A total of 2144 applications requesting a total of $ 953,192,091 were received in this year’s AFRI Foundational Program competition. These proposals were submitted to 20 individual programs under AFRI Foundational Program solicitation.
FY 2013 appropriation funding is described below. Please note there is more number of awards in FY 2013 than stated here in several programs where FY 2012 appropriation was used to fund those awards. They are not included here.

1) Plant Breeding for Agricultural Production: This program received a total of 129 applications requesting a total budget of $62,000,000. The program awarded 21 proposals. 17 of the proposals with total budget of $8,052,500 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

2) Understanding Biological Mechanisms for Plant Production: This program received a total of 196 research applications requesting a total budget of $85,730,944. The program funded 34 proposals. 16 of the proposals with a total budget of $7,032,055 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

3) Understanding Plant-Associated Microorganisms and Plant-Microbe Interactions Program: This program received a total of 197 research applications requesting a total budget of $90,080,837. The program funded 20 proposals. 3 of the proposals with a total budget of $8,414,475 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

4) Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants: For the FY 2013 award cycle, approximately $4,000,000 was available for project grant awards. The program funded 11 proposals. 9 of the proposals with a total budget of
$4, 500,000 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

5) Plant-Associated Insects and Nematodes: This program received 188 applications requesting a total budget of $83,498,153. The program funded 24 proposals. 2 of the proposals with a total budget of $899,858 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

6) Animal Reproduction: This program received 90 proposals requesting a total budget of $37,323,093. The program awarded 25 proposals. 3 of the awards with a total of 565,242 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

7) Animal Nutrition, Growth and Lactation: This program received 130 proposals requesting a total budget of $57,009,029. The program funded 24 proposals. 22 of the proposals with a total budget of 8,737,504 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

8) Animal Health and Disease: This program received 228 proposals requesting a total budget of $101,349,940. The program funded 56 proposals.
31 of the proposals with a total budget of 10,811,251 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

9) Tools and Resources for Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics: This program received a total of 40 research applications requesting a total budget of $19,163,000. The program funded 10 proposals. One of the awards with a total budget of $34,000 was funded by FY 2013 appropriation.

10) Physical and Molecular Mechanisms of Food Contamination: This program received a total of 66 research applications and 21 applications were funded. 10 of the awards with a total budget of $4,550,174 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation. The total request of 66 applications was $29,936,523.

11) Function and Efficacy of Foods: This program received a total of 110 research applications of which 103 were accepted requesting a total budget of $46,171,762. The program funded 22 proposals. 2 of the awards with a total budget of $599,977 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

12) Improving Food Quality: The program received 122 applications in FY 2013 requesting a total budget of $52,345,066. The program funded 18 proposals. 17 of the awards with a total budget of $5,935,674 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

13) Soil, Air, and Water Processes in Agroecosystems: The program received 159 proposals requesting a total budget of $72,553,177. The program funded 43 proposals. 39 of the awards with a total budget of 17,668,545 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

14) Engineering, Products, and Processes: The program received a total of 124 proposals requesting a total of $55,090,986. The program funded 16 proposals. 12 of the proposals with a total budget of 5,185,431 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

15) Nanotechnology for Agricultural and Food Systems: The program received a total of 119 proposals requesting a total of $53,373,867. The program funded 18 proposals. 6 of the proposals with a total budget of 1,796,190 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

16) Small and Medium-Sized Farms: The program received a total budget of 43 proposals requesting a total of $21,167,525. The program funded 15 proposals. One of the proposals with the total budget of 4495,000 was funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

17) Entrepreneurship, Technology and Innovation: The program received a total of 27 proposals requesting a total budget of $12,574,492. The program funded 6 proposals with a total budget of $2,955,660

18) Rural Families. Communities and Regional Development: The program received a total of 23 proposals requesting a total budget of $10,780,591. The program funded 8 proposals. 2 of the proposals with the total budget of $995,200 were funded using FY 2013 appropriation.

19) Economics, Markets and Trade: The program received a total budget of 62 proposals requesting a total of $24,582,669. . The program funded 16 new proposals with the total budget of $5,492,998

20) Environment: The program received a total budget of 24 proposals requesting a total of $9,599,297. The program funded 3 proposals with the total budget of $1,490,371.


(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

In FY 2013, 113 proposals were received. The competitive peer review was led by NSF with input and participation from USDA, NIH, and the BBSRC. A diverse panel of 25 panelists was assembled, including 3 researchers from the United Kingdom. The panel met at NSF from February 27 – March 1st.

(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2013 the USDA-NIFA and DOE – BER Plant Feedstock Genomics for Bioenergy award cycle, a budget of $8,000,000 is anticipated to fund proposals submitted to the joint research program. Maximum award size is approximately $1,500,000. A total of 54 applications requesting a total of approximately $ 62,000,000 were received in this year’s Program competition.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2013:
No Data. Program did not commence until FY 2014. Fiscal Year 2014: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE:

For FY 2014, no Request for Applications (RFA) was published and no new awards were made. In FY 2014 an anticipated $27,387,261 will be provided to fund continuation awards made in 2010 and 2012.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For FY 2014:
$7.5 million is available in the FY 2014 cycle for new awards. Continuation awards will also be made. The Food Security Challenge Area consists of two programs. A total of 56 applications were received. It is anticipated there will be 5 awards made and an 8.9% success rate.

(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

In FY 2014 $6 million were available to fund new awards, and $14,981,438 was available to fund continuation awards.


(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2014:
No new awards were made in 2014. 8 continuation awards were made for 7 Regional Bioenergy CAPs and one Pine Genome CAP totaling ~ $33 million.

(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

In FY 2014, NIFA received 356 proposals. Approximately 60 award recommendations are anticipated. Applications addressed the development of technical and functional competence for predoctoral students, and the research independence and teaching credentials of postdoctoral scientists in the agriculture, forestry, and food sciences that are within NIFA’s challenge and foundational program areas through well-developed and highly interactive mentoring and training activities.

(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For FY 2014:
This program received a total of 98 research applications of which 91 were accepted requesting a total budget of $265,261,668.00.

A twenty-one-member peer review panel will evaluate 91 applications related to preventing childhood obesity prevention from October 6 – 10, 2014. The peer panel will include faculty from 1862 and 1890 land grant universities, private universities, Hispanic Serving Institutions, and public non-land grant universities.

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2014 AFRI Foundational award cycle, a budget of $101.046, 848 is available to fund new proposals submitted to the AFRI Foundational Program solicitation. Maximum award size is $500,000.
These proposals will be submitted to 27 individual programs under AFRI Foundational Program solicitation. Currently, two of the programs (Critical Agricultural Research and Extension, 2) Exploratory Research) are receiving proposals . Therefore, complete data is not available at this time.

1) Plant Breeding for Agricultural Production: The program received 94 proposals requesting a total of $43,161,914. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

2) Plant Growth and development, Composition and Stress Tolerance: The program received 198 proposals requesting a total of $90,641,755. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

3) Photosynthetic Efficiency and Nutrient Utilization in Agricultural Plants: The program received 59 proposals requesting a total of $25,857,065. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

4) Understanding of Plant-Associated Microorganisms and Plant-Microbe Interactions: The program received 159 proposals requesting a total of $74,221,516. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

5) Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants: The program received 62 proposals requesting a total of $27,058,427. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

6) Plant-Associated Insects and Nematodes: The program received 170 proposals requesting a total of $75,704,291. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

7) Animal Reproduction: The program received 90 proposals requesting a total of $37,726,784. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

8) Animal Nutrition, Growth and Lactation: The program received 133 proposals requesting a total of $58,400,176. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

9) Animal Well-Being The program received 31 proposals requesting a total of $13,893,391. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

10) Animal Health and Disease: The program received 222 proposals requesting a total of $97,559,626. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

11) Tools and Resources - Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics: The program received 51 proposals requesting a total of $21,738,006. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

12) Tools and Resources - Veterinary Immune Reagents: The program received 5 proposals requesting a total of $2,499,926. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

13) US-UK Collaborative Projects: Animal Health and Disease; and Veterinary Immune Reagents: The program received 40 proposals requesting a total of $19,389,177. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

14) Improving Food Safety: The program received 110 proposals requesting a total of $48,691,364. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

15) Improving Food Quality: The program received 109 proposals requesting a total of $48,569,077. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

16) Function and Efficacy of Foods: The program received 102 proposals requesting a total of $44,409,126. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

17) Nitrogen and Phosphorus Cycling: The program received 90 proposals requesting a total of $41,050,397. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

18) Agroecosystem Management: The program received 87 proposals requesting a total of $40,471,063. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

19) Engineering, Products, and Processes: The program received 114 proposals requesting a total of $52,241,237. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

20) Nanotechnology for Agricultural and Food Systems: The program received 87 proposals requesting a total of $38,621,939. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

21) Economics, Markets and Trade: The program received 64 proposals requesting a total of $25,509,957. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

22) Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: The program received 45 proposals requesting a total of $19,400,960. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

23) Small and Medium-Sized Farms: The program received 58 proposals requesting a total of $27,538,839. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

24) Entrepreneurship, Technology and Innovation: The program received 23 proposals requesting a total of $9,967,599. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

25) Rural Communities and Regional Development: The program received 40 proposals requesting a total of $19,022,830. The program staff is in the process of assembling the review panel.

26) Critical Agricultural Research and Extension (CARE): The data is not available at this point.

27) Exploratory Research: The data is not available at this point.

(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

In FY 2014, 91 proposals were received. The competitive peer review was led by NSF with input and participation from USDA, NIH, and the BBSRC. A diverse panel of 24 panelists was assembled, including 3 researchers from the United Kingdom. The panel met at NSF from February 12 – 14th. 6 awards are being made with approximately $13.5 Million.

(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2014 the USDA-NIFA and DOE – BER Plant Feedstock Genomics for Bioenergy award cycle, a budget of $12,600,000 is anticipated to fund proposals submitted to the joint research program. Maximum award size is approximately $1,500,000. A total of 58 applications requesting a total of approximately $76,492,122.33 were received in this year’s Program competition.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2014:
A Request for applications was released in February 2014. NIFA anticipates $30 million will be available to support the AFRI Water for Agriculture Challenge Area program designed to help solve critical water problems in rural and agricultural watersheds across the United States for projects up to five years (FY 2014 – FY 2018). In FY 2014 approximately $6 million is available in support for this program. The program will focus on developing solutions for water management that link food, water, climate, energy, and environmental issues. Funding will be used to develop management practices, technologies, and tools for farmers, ranchers, forest owners and managers, public decision-makers, public and private managers and citizens to improve water resource quantity and quality. NIFA’s approach will link social, economic, and behavioral sciences with traditional biophysical sciences and engineering to address regional scale issues with shared hydrological processes, and meteorological and basin characteristics.
Letters of Intent (LOIs) were requested by NIFA Program Staff by April 2014. Program received 208 LOIs and encouraged 134 LOIs. Full proposals are due August 13, 2014 and the Peer-review Panel is scheduled for September 22-26, 2014. No other data is available. Fiscal Year 2015: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE:

For FY 2015, we anticipate releasing a RFA for a single program on Agriculture and Natural Resources Science for Climate Viability and Change with an anticipated total budget of $5 million in new awards. In FY 2015, the program will consider projects that involve one or more of the three functions, research, education and extension, that focus on the societal challenge to adapt agroecosystems and natural resource systems to climate variability and change and implement mitigation strategies in those systems. Priority issues include:
1) Climate and Microbial Processes in Agroecosystems
2) Climate Resilient Land Use for Agriculture and Forestry

It is expected that AFRI will provide approximately $4 million to fund continuation awards made in 2012.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For FY 2015:
It is expected that the Food Security Challenge Area will be funded at 16.8 million. A total of 100 applications are expected. It is anticipated there will be 12 awards made and a 12% success rate. Continuation awards will also be made for projects awarded as continuation awards in earlier years.

(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

In FY 2015, the Challenge Area anticipates making $5.9 million available for new awards, and $11,850,543 for continuation awards.

(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2015:
No new awards will be made in 2015. 8 continuation awards are anticipated for 7 Regional Bioenergy CAPs and one Pine Genome CAP totaling ~ $33 million.

(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

The FY 2015 RFA is pending. Approximately 360 applications, and 60 awards are anticipated for the predoctoral and postdoctoral fellowship program.

(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For FY 2015:
Data not yet available. Pertinent data to be provided by Program at a future date.

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2015:
Information is Not Yet Applicable. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.

(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

In FY 2015, $13 million of total funding is anticipated. The RFA is expected to be released in early August 2015. NSF continues as the lead agency. In addition to USDA, NIH, NSF and the UK-BBSRC, the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation will be a funding partner. The proposal submission deadline is November 19, 2014. The peer panel will take place in early 2015. About 100 submissions are anticipated.

(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2015:
Information is not yet available. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2015:
Request for applications under review. No other data available. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature (140):
7 CFR Part 3430, Competitive and Noncompetitive Non-formula Grant Programs – General Grant Administrative Provisions and Program-Specific Administrative Provisions; 2 CFR Part 215, Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and other Non-profit Organizations (OMB Circular A-110); 2 CFR Part 220, Cost Principles for Educational Institutions (OMB Circular A-21); 2 CFR Part 225, Cost Principles for State, Local, and Indian Tribal Governments (OMB Circular A-87); 2 CFR Part 230, Cost Principles for Non-profit Organizations (OMB Circular A-122); 7 CFR Part 3015, USDA Uniform Federal Assistance Regulations; 7 CFR Part 3017, Government wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and Government wide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Grants); 7 CFR Part 3018, New Restrictions on Lobbying; and 7 CFR Part 3019, Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Non-profit Organizations.
Information Contacts (150)
Regional or Local Office (151) :
None.
Headquarters Office (152):
USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Food Production and Sustainablity, Division of Animal Systems, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2240, Telephone: (202) 401-6134; Fax: (202) 1602.

ADDITIONAL CONTACTS:

USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Bioenergy, Climate, and Environment, Division of Global Climate Change, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2210, Telephine: (202) 401-4926; Fax: (202) 401-1705;

USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Food Production and Sustainablity, Division of Plant Systems-Protection, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2240, Telephone: (202) 401-4939; Fax: (202) 401-1782:

USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition, Division of Food Safety, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2225, Telephone: (202) 401-1954; Fax: (202) 401-4888;

USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Bioenergy, Climate, and Environment, Division of Bioenergy, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2210, Telephone: (202) 401-5244; Fax: (202) 401-2653;

AND

USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition, Division of Nutrition, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2225, Telephone: (202) 401-2138; Fax: (202) 401-6488.

, Washington, District of Columbia 20250-2240 Phone: (202) 401-6134 Fax: (202) 401-1602
Website Address (153):
http://www.nifa.usda.gov/
Examples of Funded Projects (170):
Fiscal Year 2013: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE:

For FY 2013:
A $250,000 project was funded that will, over a two year period to develop an inexpensive, simple, and powerful method of detoxifying the mycotoxin Ochratoxin-A (OTA) in wine. Climate change is causing increased infection of wine grapes by mycotoxin producing fungi, which pose a great risk to human health.

A $975,000 project was funded to look at how climate mediated temperature extremes are impacts turkey production. The long-term goal of this project is to develop and optimize an adaptation strategy that mitigates the negative effects of temperature extremes on turkey meat quality to enable the poultry industry to implement new management practices that increase yield and maintain a high quality product.
A $900,000 project was funded to study forest managers’ views on climate change, its perceive risks, and the potential for changing forest management to adapt to and mitigate climate change in the rural resource-dependent Blue Mountains region of eastern Oregon.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For FY 2013:
A Conference on Systems Biology–based Diagnosis of Animal Infectious Diseases – this conference will look at the issues of diagnostic errors and/or delayed decisions associated with animal infectious diseases. The conference is grounded in Systems Biology and will bring together mathematicians, immunologists, microbiologists, epidemiologists, methodologists, extensionists, and computer scientists, who will address novel solutions for research gaps which result in diagnostic errors and information loss; (ii) develop methodological -technological alternatives that, if integrated as new bioinformatic packages, can aid in developing animal disease surveillance systems with enhanced information content, faster implementation, and fewer false or erroneous results; and (iii) disseminate novel concepts to a large and diverse audience.
Postharvest Physical Treatments to Reduce Losses of Organic and other Locally-grown Produce while Improving Quality and Extending Shelf Life – the integrated proposal will look at the needs of smaller, local producers and determine optimum postharvest treatments to improve the quality and shelf-life of their produce.
Integrated Cost-effective Control of Bovine Leukemia Virus in Dairy Cattle – the overall purpose of this proposal is to measure BLV’s economic impact, determine the cost-effectiveness of BLV management controls, and deliver educational and extension programs designed to reduce the spread of BLV which decreases milk production, decreases cow longevity, and undermines consumer confidence in dairy products.

(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

For FY 2013:
*Use of artificial leaf surfaces for improved mechanistic understanding of pathogen survival on fresh produce
*Development and transfer of disinfection by-products into fresh and fresh-cut produce and impact on disinfection efficacy
*Examining mechanisms of transport and bioaccumulation of nanoparticles into food crops

(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2013:
In 2013 a seventh AFRI Regional Bioenergy CAP was awarded ($2M/yr. for five years on a continuation basis) to a consortium led by Colorado State University. This project is at the nexus of biofuel and biobased product production, climate change, ecosystem restoration and wildfire mitigation. Infestations of pine and spruce bark beetles have caused widespread mortality in coniferous forests in the Rocky Mountains over the past 15 years, with ~42 million acres of U.S. forests impacted since 1996, a trend is only likely to intensify with future global climate change. The resulting beetle-killed wood represents a vast, high-density bioenergy resource that requires no cultivation, circumvents food-versus-fuel concerns, and likely has a highly favorable carbon balance compared most other forestry systems due to the underlying disturbance to ecosystem carbon stocks and net productivity. Beetle-killed biomass is typically located far from urban industrial centers, in relatively inaccessible areas with challenging topography; thus harvest and transportation costs have been a key barrier to more widespread utilization of the resource. However, recent advances in mobile thermochemical conversion technologies are enabling the production of advanced liquid biofuel feedstocks and co-products on-site, thus bypassing this fundamental constraint. Cool Planet Energy Systems has been a driving force in this field, and their prototype pyrolysis system can be deployed deep within areas of beetle-killed timber. Their distributed small moveable biorefinery approach is one of few concepts that make the use of insect-damaged trees as feedstock plausible.

However, significant technical and knowledge barriers to the widespread deployment of such systems in beetle-disturbed forests still exist, and environmental footprints, social issues, and local policy constraints remain largely unexplored. This project, Sustainable biofuel feedstocks from beetle-killed wood: Bioenergy Alliance Network of the Rockies (BANR), will develop a comprehensive program to address the major challenges limiting utilization of insect-killed trees in the Rockies. Much of the project revolves around feedstock availability inventory and modeling, sustainable feedstock removal practices, and production, and use of the biochar co-product resulting from the gasification of biomass to ultimately produce drop-in hydrocarbon distillates that will function as advanced liquid transportation fuels. The project will undertake comprehensive economic, environmental, and social/policy assessment, and integrate all research results into a web-based user-friendly decision support system.

(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

For FY 2013:
Projects were funded that will develop the next generation of leaders who will be actively engaged in agriculture, forestry, and food related research, education, and extension careers. Successful proposals focused on developing the next generation of scientists who will lead agriculture into the future by solving current and future challenges facing our society. The awarded projects also targeted talented, highly-motivated doctoral candidates and postdoctoral trainees that demonstrate remarkable promise and demonstrated the ability to increase the number of gifted agricultural scientists in the United States. Further information is available at http://www.nifa.usda.gov/fo/fellowshipsgrantprogramafri.cfm.
(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For FY 2013:
“Get Fruved:” A peer-led, train-the-trainer social marketing intervention to increase fruit and vegetable intake and prevent childhood obesity.

This project is an integrated approach combining research (process, formative, and outcome assessments incorporated into a theory based intervention design), education (the development and instruction of a multi-state, undergraduate health promotion course), and Extension (the
development and testing of a 4-H health promotion program for students in college and high school 4-H groups led by Extension and 4-H faculty and staff).

A retail coupon intervention to promote healthy snack options among adolescents in convenience stores: The CHOMPS Pilot Project.

The overall goal of this project is to work with community partners and small stores in Somerville, MA, a racially diverse community where 68.3% of enrolled school children are low-income. We will develop simple interventions utilizing “kids only” coupons to encourage children to make healthier choices, and to understand how children consider price when making independent food purchase decisions.

Childhood Health & Obesity Initiative: Communities Engaged for Success.

The project will test the feasibility and effectiveness of an 8-week summer fitness & wellness program designed to address the social and environmental barriers that unique to low income families. Project objectives are to: 1) assess improvements in obesity risk factors (selected nutrition and physical activity behaviors) in intervention children compared to control group; 2) examine the changes in children’s body image and self-concept in intervention children compared to control group; and 3) evaluate the long term (6 months) changes in behavior, attitudes and obesity risk factors and their sustainability beyond the timeframe of the program.

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2013:
1) Plant Breeding for Agricultural Production: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Breeding and genetics of lettuce for resistance against race 2 Verticillium wilt.
b) Analysis of Fiber Traits & Development of Toolkits Enabling Enhanced Fiber Breeding in Cotton Using an Integrated RAD-Seq & RNA-Seq Approach
c) Development and application of a high-density SNP genotyping array for citrus.
d) Prebreeding Tomato For Optimized Acylsugar-Mediated Resistance To Insects: Acylsugar Structure.
e) Increasing Legume Grazing for Higher Beef Gain on Pastures: An Improved High-Tannin Birdsfoot Trefoil Cultivar with Trans-Regional Potential.

2) Understanding Biological Mechanisms for Plant Production: The title of the funded projects are:
a) The Role of Leaf and Seed Starch in Rice Whole Plant Metabolism.
b) Heterotrimeric G protein signaling in maize development and productivity.
c) Enhancing Cold Tolerance in Highbush Blueberry by Identifying Genotypes in Lowbush Blueberry Through Genetic Association - Seed Grant.
d) Root cortical cell file number- a novel trait to increase drought tolerance by reducing the metabolic cost of soil exploration.
e) Elucidating the biosynthesis of stilbenoids in peanut.

3) Understanding Plant-Associated Microorganisms and Plant-Microbe Interactions Program: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Elucidating the molecular function and mechanism of major QTL Fhb1 in resisting Fusarium head blight in wheat.
b) Targeting the unfolded protein response for reducing virus infection in potato.
c) Role of the plant DNA repair system in geminvirus infection.

4) Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Scotch broom alters Douglas-fir community structure and soil ecology: prevention and mitigation through alternative management practices.
b) Rapid adaptor or effective generalist in one of the world’s worst weeds? Challenges to integrated weed management.
c) The Role Of Hybridization In Biological Control Of Weeds.
d) Molecular and developmental characterization of the interaction between tomato and the parasitic weed cuscuta.

5) Plant-Associated Insects and Nematodes: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Mechanisms of Hypoxic Adaptation in Storage Insect Pests
b) Elucidating the Molecular Mechanisms of Odor and Pheromone Signaling in Olfactory Neurons

6) Animal Reproduction: The title of the funded projects are:
a) A comparative approach to identify functional amino acid response elements of genes controlling ovarian function.
b) Using Heterospecific Embryo Transfer (HET) to study conceptus:uterine interactions in Large Bovids.

7) Animal Nutrition, Growth and Lactation: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Ampk-Mediated Muscle Growth And Energy Metabolism In Growing Pigs.
b) Genetic and environmental variation and its subsequent effect on fetal growth, nutrient utilization, and composition in beef cattle.
c) Effects of intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) on fetal development in sheep.

8) Animal Health and Disease: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Functional Genomics to Enhance Aflatoxin Resistance in Poultry.
b) Proteomics-defined Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus Immunoproteome.
c) Experimental re-annotation of Bovine Herpesvirus-1 genome and characterization of the virion proteome.

9) Tools and Resources for Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics: The title of the funded project is:
a) Advancing Dairy Cattle Genetics: Genomics and Beyond.

10) Physical and Molecular Mechanisms of Food Contamination: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Human noroviruses: Mechanisms of attachment and internalization in leafy greens.
b)Efficient Capture And Preconcentration With Magnetic Microbeads For The Detection Of Salmonella.

11) Function and Efficacy of Foods: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Transcriptional Regulation of Hepatic Inflammation by Green Tea Extract in Rodent Models of Oxidative Stress.
b) Establishing the function and availability of bioactive components from whole-grain rice varieties for colon-specific health benefits.

12) Improving Food Quality: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Synergistic interaction between ultraviolet light and novel photosensitizers for enhanced microbial safety of fresh produce
b) Development of Nanoemulsion-based Delivery Systems for Functional Lipids.

13) Soil, Air, and Water Processes in Agroecosystems: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Colloid Mobility in Soils, Fundamental Pore Scale Mechanisms, Simplifications and Practical Relevance for Risk Analysis.
b) Nitrogen synchrony at the crop-soil interface: optimizing root-microbe interactions to minimize environmental nitrogen losses
c) Water Quality Implications of Unique Transformation Processes of Synthetic Steroids Used As Agricultural Pharmaceuticals.
d) Regional-Scale Assessment of N2O Emissions within the US Corn Belt: The Impact of Precipitation and Agricultural Drainage on Indirect Emission.

14) Engineering, Products, and Processes: The title of the funded projects are:
a) BioMods: Biomass Optimized Delivery System.
b) New generation of green, high efficient agricultural machines powered by high-pressure water hydraulic technology.

15) Nanotechnology for Agricultural and Food Systems: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Nanocrystalline Cellulose Based Piezoelectric Materials For Energy Sustainability.
b) Nanotechnology Symposium organized by the International Society of Food Applications of Nanoscale Science (ISFANS).

16) Small and Medium-Sized Farms: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Risk Mitigation Strategies to Induce Participation in the Advanced Biofuel Industry by Small/Medium-Sized Farmers: Effectiveness and Implication.

17) Entrepreneurship, Technology and Innovation: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Understanding and designing long-term resilience in the US food system: the role of entrepreneurship and innovations in supporting (RFNs).
b) Assessing Viticulture Production Practices for Robotic Technology Development.

18) Rural Families. Communities and Regional Development: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Maximizing the Gains of Old and New Energy Development for America`s Rural Communities.
b) Sustaining and Enhancing Local Agriculture in Rural Areas: Assessing Key Producer and Consumer Issues in Northern New England.

19) Economics, Markets and Trade: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Further Analysis of the Impacts of SPS Measures on US Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Trade.
b) Spatial Competition in Agricultural Markets (with Application to U.S. Dairy).
c) Expanding US Market Access in China`s Evolving Agricultural and Trade Policy Environment.

20) Environment: The title of the funded projects are:
a) Developing a Cost-Effective Payment System for Forest Carbon Sequestration.
b) Effects of Oil and Gas Development on Agriculture: The Importance of Water Resources.

(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

For FY 2013:
USDA-NIFA funded two awards, both are US-UK Collaborative projects. NIFA funds = $3,050,000; UK budget for 2 awards = 1,155,765 British pounds ($1.76 million US equivalent dollars).

1. Foot and Mouth disease

Title: US-UK Collaborative: Persistence of a highly contagious pathogen: ecological and evolutionary mechanisms in foot-and-mouth disease (FMD)
Focus: Persistence and transmission of FMD in reservoir population;
results will be communicated with Global FMDV Research Alliance,
FMDV World Reference Laboratory, and other decision-makers.
Budget: NIFA $1,410,000 + UK-BBSRC 572,548 pounds
Institutions: US (Oregon State Univ); UK (Pirbright Institute; Univ. of Glasgow); South Africa(Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute; Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries)

2. Potato viruses and aphids

Title: US-UK Collaborative: Spatial Epidemiology of a Vector-Borne Plant Virus: Interactions between Landscape, Hosts, Vectors and an Emerging Potato Virus
Focus: Compare and contrast potato virus Y and aphid phenology in
US and UK farming systems (historical + new aphid trap data);
New recombinant strains of potato virus Y are emerging!
Budget: NIFA $ 1,640,000 + UK-BBSRC 583,217 pounds


(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2013:
This was the seventh year of the joint USDA and DOE funding program. DOE’s Office of Science provided $6 million in funding for five projects, while USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) awarded $2 million to fund two projects. Initial funding will support research projects for up to three years. The USDA and DOE projects are designed to improve crops to be grown for biofuels—including selected trees and grasses—by increasing their yield, quality and ability to adapt to extreme environments. Researchers will rely on the most advanced techniques of modern genomics to develop breeding and other strategies to improve the crops. The research will be conducted on switchgrass, poplar and pine, among other plants. The potential benefits of this research range from decreasing oil imports to increasing options for American farmers. Because these crops will be optimized to tolerate conditions such as drought and poor soils, they can be grown on marginal lands unsuitable for food crops, thereby avoiding competition with food production.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2013:
No Data. Program did not commence until FY 2014. Fiscal Year 2014: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE:

For FY 2014:
A $4 million continuation award will be made to continues to support an interdisciplinary multistate Sustainable Corn team assessing the environmental, economic and social impacts of long-term climate variability on corn-based cropping systems if the Midwest.

A $1 million continuation award will be made to continue to support the Useful to Usable (U2U) is an integrated project working to improve farm resilience in the North Central U.S. by transforming existing climate data into usable products for the agricultural community to help producers make better long-term plans on how to crop management.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For FY 2014:
Application decisions pending. Applications are focused on minimizing losses from pests and diseases of crops and livestock. Continuation awards will be made on food security projects funded in prior years.

(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

For FY 2014:
Information not yet available. Pertinent details will be provided by Program at a future date.

(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2014:
No new awards were made in 2014.

(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

For FY 2014:
Award recommendations are pending. Once executed, information will be available at http://www.nifa.usda.gov/fo/fellowshipsgrantprogramafri.cfm.
(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For FY 2014:
It is anticipated that projects funded in 2014 will increase our understanding of childhood obesity prevention.

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2014:
1) Plant Breeding for Agricultural Production: It is anticipated that the projects funded in 2014 will lead to the improvement of crop yield, quality and/ or adaptation to diverse agricultural systems.

2) Plant Growth and development, Composition and Stress Tolerance: It is anticipated that the projects funded in 2014 will lead to the molecular, biochemical, cellular and whole plant level understanding of 1) how plant growth and development affect productivity; 2) improving plant compositions and nutritional quality and 3) mechanisms of plant response to abiotic stresses.
3) Photosynthetic Efficiency and Nutrient Utilization in Agricultural Plants: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY 2014 will increase molecular, biochemical, cellular and whole-plant understanding of 1) increasing plant productivity through studies of carbon assimilation, source-sink relationship, and photosynthetic efficiency and 2) improving nutrient (e.g., nitrogen, phosphorus) uptake, assimilation, accumulation, and/or utilization through studies in crops or studies of plant-microbe interactions.
4) Understanding of Plant-Associated Microorganisms and Plant-Microbe Interactions: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY 2014 will increase the understanding of mechanisms of plant-microbe interaction, communication within microbial populations, communication between plants and microbes and epidemiological characteristics of agriculturally important organisms.
5) Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase the knowledge on compelling scientific questions underlying current issues in weed and invasive plant management in crops, managed forests and rangeland.
6) Plant-Associated Insects and Nematodes: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase fundamental and applied knowledge of biological and environmental processes that affect the abundance and spread of plant-associated pest and beneficial insects or nematodes in agricultural systems including managed forests and rangelands.
7) Animal Reproduction: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in cellular, molecular, genomic/genetic or whole-animal aspects of animal reproduction.
8) Animal Nutrition, Growth and Lactation: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in cellular, molecular, genomic/genetic or whole-animal aspects of nutrition, growth and lactation.
9) Animal Well-Being: It is anticipated It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge of evaluating current management practices and development of new management practices that reduce animal stress and optimize sustainable production efficiency.
10) Animal Health and Disease: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in cellular, molecular, genomic/genetic or whole-animal aspects of animal health and disease
11) Tools and Resources - Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in the development of community genetic and genomic resources and tools including software, experimental protocol/methods for breeding, advancing basic biology and applied animal health and nutrition.
12) Tools and Resources - Veterinary Immune Reagents: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in the development of publicly accessible immunological reagents for agriculturally-relevant animal species.
13) US-UK Collaborative Projects: Animal Health and Disease; and Veterinary Immune Reagents:

A) Animal Health and Disease: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge by doing research on emerging diseases and/or diseases of agriculturally relevant animals of high economic consequence in BOTH the US and UK (viral, bacterial, and parasitic diseases) and alternatives to current antimicrobials and anthelmintics used to treat disease in agricultural animals in both the US and UK.

B) Veterinary Immune Reagents: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in the development of publicly accessible immunological reagents for agriculturally-relevant animal species that benefit both US and UK.
14) Improving Food Safety: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase will be useful in improving the microbial, physical, and chemical safety of foods by preventing and mitigating contamination.
15) Improving Food Quality: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in understanding of the physical, chemical, and biological properties of foods and food ingredients.
16) Function and Efficacy of Foods: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will improve function and efficacy of foods, nutrients and/or other dietary bioactive components in promoting health.
17) Nitrogen and Phosphorus Cycling: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will increase knowledge in the physical and biogeochemical (including microbial) processes affecting the flow, fate and transport, transformation, movement, and storage of nitrogen and phosphorus.
18) Agroecosystem Management: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will develop and evaluate innovative agroecosystem management practices and systems for their potential to enhance ecosystem services.
19) Engineering, Products, and Processes: It is anticipated that the projects in FY2014 will develop engineering, products, and processes to improve agriculturally relevant plant, animal, forestry, and natural resource system.
20) Nanotechnology for Agricultural and Food Systems: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will develop nanotechnology enabled solutions for food security through improved productivity, quality, and biodiversity; improved nutritional value of feeds and more effective therapies that significantly impact animal health and wellness; enhanced food safety and biosecurity; and increased protection for natural resources, the environment, and agricultural ecosystems.
21) Economics, Markets and Trade: The program anticipates on funding projects in FY 2014 that focus on developing theories, methods and applications of economic and other social science disciplines
22) Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: This program anticipates in funding projects in FY 2014 that will advance theories, methods and applications that contribute to understanding an ecological approach to agriculture that embraces production and sustainable resource management simultaneously.
23) Small and Medium-Sized Farms: This program anticipates in funding projects in FY 2014 that develops and/or adopts new disciplinary or multidisciplinary models to assist agricultural (farm, forest, or ranch) landowner decision making with respect to appropriate scale management strategies and technologies to enhance economic efficiency and sustainability.
24) Entrepreneurship, Technology and Innovation: It is anticipated that the projects funded in FY2014 will enhance the development of rural entrepreneurship; enhance the technology transfer from colleges, universities and other research laboratories to rural manufacturers.
25) Rural Communities and Regional Development: FY 2014 funded projects under this program will evaluate the institutional, sociological, or economic factors affecting decision making and application of technology which will promote the adoption of private strategies and public policy options to enhance investments in agricultural and rural communities.
26) Critical Agricultural Research and Extension (CARE): FY 2014 funded projects under this program will develop and implement solutions to critical producer problems associated with animal and crop production, protection, or product quality.
27) Exploratory Research: This program anticipates in funding projects in FY 2014 will develop proof of concept for untested novel ideas including “high risk - high impact” work that will lead to a significant change in US agriculture.

(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

For FY 2014:
Final award recommendations are not finalized for FY 2014 and will be announced with a joint NSF, NIH, USDA, BBSRC press release in September 2014. USDA anticipates supporting one award in FY 2014 studying two Mycobacterial diseases. The USDA award is a joint US-UK Collaborative project with the USDA supporting the US research team and the UK-BBSRC funding the UK research team.

Approximately five (5) other awards are anticipated that will be funded by the other partners.

(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2014:
This was the eighth year of the joint USDA and DOE funding program. DOE’s Office of Science provided $10.62 million in funding for eight projects, while USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) awarded $2 million to fund two projects. Initial funding will support research projects for up to three years. The USDA and DOE projects are designed to improve crops to be grown for biofuels—including selected trees and grasses—by increasing their yield, quality and ability to adapt to extreme environments. Researchers will rely on the most advanced techniques of modern genomics to develop breeding and other strategies to improve the crops. The research will be conducted on switchgrass, poplar, sorghum, Miscanthus, Camelina, and pennycress. The potential benefits of this research range from decreasing oil imports to increasing options for American farmers. Because these crops will be optimized to tolerate conditions such as drought and poor soils, they can be grown on marginal lands unsuitable for food crops, thereby avoiding competition with food production.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2014:
Pertinent data to be provided by Program at a future date. Fiscal Year 2015: (A) AGRICULTURAL AND NATURAL RESOURCES SCIENCE FOR CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE:

For FY 2015:
No information is available on new awards, as the RFA is still under development and awards have not yet been made.
In FY 2015, an anticipated $1,937,025 continuation award will be made to continue to support a study to increase Southern Great Plains beef-grazing systems resilience to climate variability and climate change mitigating their environmental footprint of agriculture.
An additional anticipated $1,973,691 continuation award will be made to develop environmentally-sound US dairy production with enhanced resilience and capacity for climate change adaptation.

(B) FOOD SECURITY:

For FY 2015:
No data available on new awards. Continuation awards will be made on food security projects funded in prior years.

(C ) FOOD SAFETY:

For FY 2015:
Information not yet available. Pertinent details will be provided by Program at a future date.

(D) SUSTAINABLE BIOENERGY:

For FY 2015:
Data is not yet available. Pertinent data will be provided by Program at a future date.
(E) NIFA FELLOWSHIP GRANT PROGRAM:

For FY 2015:
Not yet applicable. Pertinent data will be provided by Program at a future date.

(F) CHILDHOOD OBESITY PREVENTION:

For FY 2015:
Data not yet available. Pertinent data to be provided by Program at a future date

(G) FOUNDATIONAL PROGRAM:

For FY 2015:
Information is Not Yet Applicable. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.

(H) ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION OF INFECTIOUS DISEASES:

For FY 2015:
Information is not yet available. Pertinent data to be provided by Program at a future date..

(I) PLANT FEEDSTOCK GENOMICS FOR BIOENERGY:

For FY 2015:
Information is not yet available. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.

(J) WATER FOR AGRICULTURE:

For FY 2015:
Request for applications under review. No other data available. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals (180):
Within guidelines established for the program as described in the RFAs.