Agriculture systems and technology

Nano-Engineered Surface Guards Against Biofouling

Microbes colonize every natural or artificial surface on Earth. In some cases, these microbial communities (known as “biofilms”) can be benign. However, most biofilms are undesirable: they corrode surfaces (from teeth to oil pipes), and serve as a refuge for pathogens. Learning to prevent or disrupt biofilms, and thus minimize their undesirable impacts, remains one of the goals of industrial microbiology. NIFA supports this research through the Agriculture and Food and Research Initiative.

eDNA Tool Detects Invasive Clams Before They Become a Nuisance

The University of Illinois-led team of Rice University, University of Notre Dame, and University of Nevada at Reno used environmental DNA (eDNA) to detect invasive clams in California and Nevada lakes.

Parasitoids May Control Emerald Ash Borer Population

Researches at University of Kentucky’s Forest Entomology Lab have discovered a closely related native ash borer species that is kept in check by natural enemies, parasitoids. Researchers are investigating whether the native parasitoid can discover and control the invasive emerald ash borer.

Discovering Virus-Resistant Peanuts

Researchers at Auburn University are using NIFA funding to identify molecular markers directly linked to these two challenges.

Cattle and Soil Health

Soil health is an underappreciated, but critical element in a thriving agroecosystem.

NCSU Team for Methyl Bromide Helps Growers Maintain Yields While Improving the Ozone Layer

With the help of extension specialists at NC State University, farmers in the Tarheel State are helping to reduce the size of the ozone hole over the South Pole.

Technology to Tend Your Garden

With NIFA funding, researchers at Purdue University created the Purdue Plant Doctor, a suite of apps that offers high-resolution photos to help users identify plant disorders in nearly 200 plants, such as trees, annuals, perennials, and tomatoes.

Training Future Environmental Leaders

The Florida-Caribbean Consortium for Agriculture Education and Hispanic Workforce Development (FCCAgE) is a multi-institutional consortium in Florida and Puerto Rico for training Hispanic students in agricultural, biological, and natural resources sciences for career placement. Support was provided by NIFA's Hispanic-Serving Institutions Program.

New Technology Makes Oak Wilt Detection Faster, More Affordable

New technology developed by University of Minnesota (UMN) College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences offers a simple, affordable diagnostic test utilizing nanotechnology and gold.

Improving Fine Wine Grapes

Grapes are the highest-value fruit crop grown in the United States.