- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
Humiston is one of six higher education witnesses who will speak at the hearing, which is being held as Congress considers provisions of the 2018 Farm Bill.
The hearing takes place at the Longworth House office Building in Washington, D.C., and will be streamed live and recorded on YouTube.
In announcing the hearing, the chair of the House Committee on Agriculture, Michael Conaway of Texas, said ag research has been essential to U.S. gains in productivity over the past century.
"With the global population expected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050, U.S. production agriculture will continue to be asked to produce more with fewer resources and the best way to do that will be through strategic investments in agricultural research," Conaway said. "I look forward to hearing from university leaders about the opportunities and challenges they face in ensuring American agriculture remains a world leader in cutting-edge technology and research.”
Following are highlights from Humiston's prepared remarks:
- A recent study found the return on investment for federal funding of the public land-grant system averages 21:1, corresponding to annual rates of return between 9 percent and 10 percent.
- With the University of California (UC) Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) serving as a vital partner, California's $47 billion agricultural sector continues to make California the nation's top agricultural state.
- In the past fiscal year, UC ANR has served more than 1.4 million adults and youth directly, published about 1,800 peer-reviewed journal articles and filed more than 20 patents.
- Federal and state funds are leveraged to secure federal competitive grants, grants from private industry, and other gifts and awards for research at the nation's land-grant universities.
- Although progress is being made to incrementally increase appropriations to the USDA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, it remains funded at considerably less than the $700 million authorized in the previous two Farm Bills.
Humiston will explain that universities are uniquely set up to allow collaboration among experts in different subjects to solve complex problems and she will give a few examples of multidisciplinary projects, including development of a product to improve the shelf-life of fresh produce and reduce food waste:
“James Rogers studied flexible solar cells at UC Santa Barbara and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. A radio program on world hunger gave the materials scientist his “aha!” moment in 2012. His work on thin-film polymers from solar cells, coupled with information from UC Cooperative Extension, led to an invisible, edible and tasteless barrier that can protect food crops and dramatically improve longevity of produce freshness – using waste plant parts often left on the farm. Apeel Sciences now supports 71 employees and hits shelves this summer, when some of the world's largest avocado producers start using it.”
For a transcript of Humiston's full prepared remarks, see http://ucanr.edu/files/264186.pdf.
UC Agriculture and Natural Resources researchers and educators draw on local expertise to conduct agricultural, environmental, economic, youth development and nutrition research that helps California thrive. Learn more at ucanr.edu.
- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
The workshops are designed to help potential applicants understand, develop and submit federal grant applications for the Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion programs. The 2014 Farm Bill reauthorized this program, which will provide $30 million in grants each year through 2018. The funds will be divided between the Farmers Market Promotion Program and the Local Food Promotion Program.
The workshop instructor is Jennifer Sowerwine, a UC ANR specialist based at UC Berkeley whose research and extension is focused on development of equitable, economically viable and culturally relevant food systems in metropolitan areas.
“The workshop is open to anyone interested in connecting agricultural producers and consumers through local food systems,” Sowerwine said. “This is a great opportunity to strengthen the local economy, support small-scale farmers, and make fresh, healthy food more accessible to the community.”
The workshops are a collaborative effort involving UC ANR, USDA and Regional Rural Development Centers. They will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. as follows:
April 8 - Berkeley. 155 Kroeber Hall at UC Berkeley
April 10 - Modesto. Stanislaus County Ag Center, 3800 Cornucopia Way, Modesto
April 15 - Davis. UC ANR Building, 2801 Second St., Davis
April 22 - Redding. North Valley Catholic Social Services, 2400 Washington Ave., Redding
Each of the workshops will provide an overview of the grant programs and help in developing project ideas, preparing the proposal and completing the application. All applications much be submitted by 11:59 p.m. Eastern May 14. Sowerwine suggests applicants start the application process as soon as possible to ensure they meet the deadline. To apply, go to http://www.grants.gov. Questions about the process will be addressed at the workshop.
Registration is $10 and includes lunch, training materials and resources. The agenda, details and online registration are on the web at http://ucanr.edu/sites/localfoodpromo. For more information about the program, contact Jennifer Sowerwine at (510) 664-7043, email@example.com. For information about workshop logistics, contact Alex Zabelin, (530) 750-1259, or Saundra Wais, (530) 750-1260, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The University of California Global Food Initiative aims to put the world on a path to sustainably and nutritiously feed itself. By building on existing efforts and creating new collaborations among UC's 10 campuses, affiliated national laboratories and the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the initiative will develop and export solutions for food security, health and sustainability throughout California, the United States and the world.
- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
Karen Ross, secretary of California Department of Food and Agriculture and former U.S. Department of Food and Agriculture chief of staff, and Katy Coba, director of the Oregon Department of Agriculture, will share their insights on what the Farm Bill is likely to mean for agriculture in the western states.
"The Farm Bill affects every California commodity,” said Daniel Sumner, director of the UC Agricultural Issues Center and conference coordinator. "Growers, lenders, agribusiness executives, policy advisors, agricultural leaders, university professionals, students and everyone who values comprehensive and objective information about the upcoming Farm Bill and U.S. farm policy are invited to participate in the conversation.”
Specific sessions include:
- "The Farm Bill: What it Does and What it Means.” Joseph Glauber, USDA chief economist, will explain what the Farm Bill does. Now working on his fifth Farm Bill, Glauber is one of the most objective and knowledgeable experts on U.S. agricultural policy.
- "The Expanding Role of Risk Management and Crop Insurance Policy" led by Hyunok Lee, UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, with participation from growers and risk management experts.
- "What Changing Federal Dairy Policy Means for Western Dairy and Related Industries" led by Professor Joseph Balagtas, Purdue University, with participation from producers, dairy industry experts and policy advocates.
- "How Federal Conservation, Energy and Climate Affects Policy for Western Agriculture" led by Professors John Antle and JunJie Wu, Oregon State University, with participation of scientists and stakeholders.
The conference is sponsored by OreCal, an Agricultural and Resource Policy Research collaboration between the Center for Agricultural & Environmental Policy at Oregon State University and the University of California Agricultural Issues Center.
More information about the conference is online at http://aic.ucdavis.edu/events/orecal_conference.html
Registration is $100, $50 for students, and covers conference materials, meals and the postconference reception. To register with a credit card, visit http://conferences.ucdavis.edu/farmbill. To register by check or UC Davis account, please contact Jonathan Barker at email@example.com. May 9 is the last day to register online./span>/span>