NIFA Update Jan. 15

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Editor: Kelly Sprute                                                                                           Jan. 15, 2020

Making a Difference

University of Illinois scientists, from left, Anna E. Arthur and Sylvia L. Crowder. Photo courtesy of L. Brian Stauffer.

University of Illinois scientists, from left, Anna E. Arthur and Sylvia L. Crowder. Photo courtesy of L. Brian Stauffer.

Healthy Diet May Avert Nutritional Problems in Head, Neck Cancer Patients

At least 90% of head and neck cancer patients develop symptoms that affect their ability or desire to eat, because of either the tumor itself or the surgery or radiation used to treat it. These problems, called nutrition impact symptoms, have wide-ranging negative effects on patients’ physical and mental health and quality of life.

However, patients who eat foods high in antioxidants and other micronutrients prior to diagnosis may reduce their risks of developing chronic nutrition impact symptoms up to one year after being diagnosed with head or neck cancer, according to a recent study led by researchers at the University of Illinois. NIFA supported this research. Read the full University of Illinois article.


Angle's Update

J. Scott Angle, NIFA Director

Today, NIFA informed Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) applicants that for FY 2020, in accordance with General Provision 762 of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (Pub. L. 116-94), NIFA will be waiving the match requirement for recipients of grants under SCRI. This provision also applies to the Emergency Citrus Disease Research and Extension (ECDRE) program. This means that no matching funds will be required of FY 2020 applicants or awardees, and applicants will not need to submit a waiver request with their application.

The deadline for SCRI full applications remains the same of March 13, 2020. NIFA still expects the ECDRE FY2020 Request For Applications to be published in the next few months.


NIFA REEport webpage image

REEport Support Guidance

For support when using the REEport system, first refer to the instructions found in either of the REEport Guide for Project Directors or REEport Financial Report Manual. Both guides provide comprehensive instructions to complete any REEport task. If you get stuck at any point, reach out to NIFA at In your message be sure to reference the instructions, indicating specifically where the process is breaking down for you. Include screenshots and identifying project numbers where applicable, which enhances our ability to resolve your issue. For additional information about REEport visit NIFA’s REEport webpage.  


NIFA’s POW-REEport Integration and Redesign Project

NIFA’s Working Group for Reporting will offer these webinars every other month or more frequently as needed. Our goal is to keep our community fully informed of the changes to NIFA’s reporting system, provide ample opportunities to ask questions, and gather feedback. We will be hosting an informational webinar Jan. 16, 2020 at 2 p.m. ET.

Don't Forget NIFA Awards Nominations Due

Silver trophy image, courtesy of Getty Images.

NIFA Partnership Awards Program 

Nomination forms must be submitted by Feb. 12. Specific instructions and other information regarding this awards program are in the 2020 NIFA Partnership Awards Criteria. Nominations must be submitted via the NIFA Partnership Awards Nomination Form. All the award information and forms can be found on NIFA’s Partnership Award webpage

NIFA Hall of Fame Awards

The NIFA Hall of Fame Nomination Form and NIFA Hall of Fame background and criteria are located on the NIFA website. Nominations must be emailed to Kimberly Whittet no later than Feb. 12. All the award information and forms can be found on NIFA’s Hall of Fame Awards webpage

News for You

University of Oklahoma weather image.

University of Oklahoma Research Team Helps Weather-Weary Ag Industry

You don’t have to look far to find news, opinions and studies about our world’s changing climate and its effects on humans. But what is less accessible is how a changing climate impacts beef cattle production. A team of scientists and researchers from across the region set out to answer this and other questions during the Great Plains Grazing project funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA hopes to use the research and findings of Basara, his student team and other researchers, to develop decision support tools to help farmers and ranchers learn more about climate effects, plan for and improve future operations, and continue to succeed in the industry. Read the full University of Oklahoma article.

Press Clips

USDA Symbol

Hemp is Once Again Legal in the U.S. After a Rocky Road

Industrial hemp is legal again in the United States, after a rocky road over the last century. In this week's Agriculture USA, Stephanie Ho has a look at some of the history. Participants: Stephanie Ho. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. USDA Undersecretary Greg Ibach. Listen the USDA broadcast.

Award Announcements

NIFA Invests Over $11 Million in Data Sciences to Improve Resource Management in U.S. Agriculture

NIFA recently awarded 22 grants under the Food and Agriculture Cyberinformatics and Tools (FACT) Initiative designed to develop data-driven solutions for addressing complex problems facing U.S. agriculture. FACT focuses on data science to enable systems and communities to effectively utilize data, improve resource management, and integrate new technologies and approaches to further U.S. food and agriculture enterprises. Projects funded through FACT will work to examine the value of data for small and large farmers, agricultural and food industries, impact the agricultural supply chain, reduce food waste and loss, improve consumer health, environmental and natural resource management, and increase U.S. competitiveness These grants are part of NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).