NIFA Update Sept. 5

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Editor: Kelly Sprute                                                                                           Sept. 5, 2018

Making a Difference

StarFighter and New Red Fire lettuce image provided by the University of Guam.
StarFighter and New Red Fire lettuce. (Image provided by the University of Guam).

Compost Treatments for Leafy Lettuce

Eating a fresh leafy-green salad gives one a feeling of health and vitality. That is because leafy lettuce is a good source of vitamins A, C, K, B6, thiamin, riboflavin, folate, iron, potassium, manganese, and protein. An impressive list from a few leaves.

University of Guam Extension Horticulturist Joe Tuquero, conducted a variety of trials on two lettuce varieties, StarFighter and New Red Fire, which were grown in pots with 13 different compost treatments. The average fresh weights of StarFighter were higher when grown in compost treatment WFC100, which consisted of wood chips, food waste, and chicken manure. These trials highlighted the different growth responses to the growing media. This research was supported by NIFA administered Hatch Act funds. Read the full compost treatment story and other University of Guam impacts in the 2017 Western Pacific Tropical Research Center Impact Report. Of the 15 impacts listed in the report, NIFA helped fund 11.  


Dr. J. Scott Angle

President Donald J. Trump Nominates Dr. J. Scott Angle to be NIFA Director

Dr. J. Scott Angle has been nominated to be the next Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, for a term of six years. Dr. Angle received his B.S. in agronomy and M.S. in soil science at the University of Maryland. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri with an emphasis on soil microbiology. Read the full White House announcement and Dr. Angle's biography on the International Fertilizer Development Center website.

News for You

Cody Stone with the Montana State University

Montana State Names New Extension Director  

Montana State University announced recently that it has selected Cody Stone to become its next Extension executive director. Stone has been serving as interim executive director of MSU Extension since June 2017. He’ll start work under his new title immediately. Read the full Bozeman Daily Chronicle article

Show Up Inspired Military Families Learning Network graphic

Rebuilding After Trauma-Lessons for Work and Life

New Military Families Learning Network podcast explores lessons learned through research and treatment with service members experiencing traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder. Featuring conversations with Melissa Walker, the podcast examines research implications regarding the roles of multidisciplinary art therapies and community support in helping individuals heal. Walker is coordinator of the Healing Arts Program at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence and the lead art therapist for Creative Forces: NEA Military Healing Arts Network.

Show Up Inspired is a monthly podcast series featuring interviews with experts in medical, social, and management sciences to explore what keeps professionals engaged and thriving. Listen to the Military Families Learning podcast.  

This material is based on work supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Office of Military Family Readiness Policy, U.S. Department of Defense Award Number 2015-48770-24368. 

Award Notification

NIFA Invests $3.5 Million in Agricultural Engineering

NIFA recently awarded 13 agricultural engineering research grants to advance precision and smart technologies. Research programs will focus on better water and fertilizer use, production energy efficiency, targeted pest management, and engineering technologies that promote animal health. New technology in agricultural production systems spur innovation in rural America and contribute to overall rural prosperity. These grants are part of NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative.

USDA SBIR Program awards $699,914 in Biofuel and Bio-Based Product Grants to Small Businesses

The USDA Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program, which is administered by NIFA recently awarded seven grants to US small business to promote the use of non-food bio-based products and biofuels by developing new or improved technologies that will lead to increased competitiveness of value-added products from agricultural materials. This research will lead to new opportunities to diversify agriculture and enhance agriculture’s role as a reliable supplier of raw materials to industry.