• The University of Missouri – Columbia received a $2 million grant for a two-year project to help identify cattle genetics best suited for regional environmental conditions. The project will create educational curriculum to help producers combat localized environmental stressors, such as fescue toxicity and heat stress, by making breeding decisions using genomic tools.

• South Dakota State University – Brookings received $2.4 million for a two-year project focusing on promotion of integrated crop and livestock management systems in the Northern Great Plains. According to the project summary, Great Plains grasslands are being converted to cropland, reducing grazing availability. The project will look at a variety of replacement forage resources available within annual cropping systems. Further, the project will identify and provide producer outreach to optimize economic and environmentally beneficial management practices specific to the Northern Great Plains.

• Utah State University received a $150,000 seed grant for a two-year project to identify potential alternatives to feedlot beef production. The project strives to create a multidisciplinary, multi-state, regional research and outreach team to collect data on the production, environmental impact and perceived value of a legume-based beef production system.

Fiscal year 2015 (Oct. 1, 2015, through Sept. 30, 2016) grants totaling $16.5 million were awarded to 14 projects under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).

Information on all projects can be found on the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) website.  end mark


—Summarized by Progressive Cattleman staff from USDA news release