WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University has acquired two grants of $1 million every from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture for five-year initiatives to reinforce sustainable agricultural techniques.
One grant is a part of a $10 million project led by Michigan State University’s Brent Ross to develop extra resilient meals techniques for dealing with a number of disasters, together with pandemics, tornadoes and flooding. The opposite grant is a part of a $10 million project led by Clemson University’s Raghupathy Karthikeyan to develop a controlled-environment agriculture platform for cultivating salt-tolerant meals crops utilizing saline irrigation water.
The grants are along with two different $10 million grants to Purdue that NIFA introduced earlier this 12 months as a part of a $70 million investment in sustainable agriculture that combine analysis, schooling and extension efforts. A kind of grants helps work to improve the economic resilience and sustainability of Eastern U.S. forests. The opposite grant goals to enhance Midwestern seafood production and consumption.
Main the extension portion of the MSU mission is Purdue’s Maria Marshall, the Jim and Lois Ackerman Professor of Agricultural Economics. Heading the schooling program improvement and analysis parts of the Clemson mission is Purdue’s Rama Radhakrishna, professor and head of the Department of Agricultural Sciences Education and Communication.
“This grant is about sustained a number of shocks,” mentioned Marshall, who focuses on catastrophe restoration for small and household companies and farms. When she started researching disruptive shocks to households and companies in 2009, disasters got here much less steadily. However now they happen regularly, and generally multiple on the similar time.
“You’ve gotten local weather change that’s already affecting completely different components of the availability chain,” Marshall mentioned. “Now you add COVID on prime of that. And then you definitely add, for instance, a prepare derailment. It’s one factor on prime of one other on prime of one other.”
Marshall and Renee Wiatt, household enterprise administration specialist in agricultural economics, will develop and coordinate the curriculum for farmers that they’ll deploy as a pilot program in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. Serving on the advisory board for this mission is Jayson Lusk, Distinguished Professor and head of the Department of Agricultural Economics.
“We are going to assist translate analysis on the farm degree, after which we’ll prepare extension professionals on this curriculum,” mentioned Marshall, who additionally directs the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development and the Purdue Initiative for Family Firms.
The long-term objective of the Clemson mission is to develop a way for hydroponic cultivation of high-value crops utilizing saline irrigation water in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida.
“The idea right here is how we will develop crops with lowered water consumption,” Radhakrishna mentioned. That is necessary, he famous, as a result of despite the fact that coastal areas have entry to ample water, all of it’s salty. And globally, agriculture accounts for about 70% of freshwater withdrawals, additionally making it the main reason for water issues in lots of areas.
Radhakrishna will assist design programs and develop curricula for highschool and college college students concerning the worth and affect of utilizing the untapped useful resource of saline water for agriculture.
He additionally will conduct a wants evaluation and stakeholder evaluation to establish potential points the analysis crew may have to deal with that will hinder the adoption of protected, productive and sustainable saline irrigation water in coastal areas. Within the mission’s remaining levels, Radhakrishna will assess the affect of the mission on college students, farmers and different key stakeholders within the focused coastal areas.
Author: Steve Koppes
Media contact: Maureen Manier, email@example.com
Sources: Maria Marshall, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rama Radhakrishna, email@example.com
Agricultural Communications: 765-494-8415;
Maureen Manier, Division Head, firstname.lastname@example.org