Last week, the Department of Agriculture announced a $2.3 million investment as part of the USDA Small Business Innovation Research Program. USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture recently awarded eight grants totaling $812,900 to small businesses to improve plant production and protection. Additionally, NIFA awarded eight grants totaling $797,600 for animal production and protection, and seven awards totaling $706,100 for conserving natural resources.

NIFA Director Dr. Carrie Castille said the program, "stimulates technological innovations in the private sector and strengthens the role of federal research and development in support of small businesses."

 Funded plant production projects include research into domestic vanilla production, blueberry pollinators and plant-based proteins. Animal production projects include vaccine research, testing animal feed for quality and herd reproductivity data. Finally, conservation projects include fertilizer and irrigation research.

The next Phase 1 request for Small Business Innovation Research applications is scheduled to open in July 2021, with a deadline in October 2021. Visit NIFA's Website to learn more.

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