Governor Tom Wolf today announced awards of nearly $1.3 million to seven organizations for research on issues critical to sustaining and growing Pennsylvania’s agriculture industry. Grant recipients include Penn State University, Temple University, University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture, Think and Grow Farms, and Western Pennsylvania Conservancy.
“The agriculture industry contributes $136 billion to our state economy every year and supports 580,000 jobs,” Gov. Wolf said. “These investments in cutting edge research are key to sustaining and growing the industry that feeds our communities and our economy.”
The grants, awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, focus on a broad range of research topics including adapting to and reducing climate change, extending growing seasons in urban agriculture, combatting animal disease, increasing farm productivity and profits, protecting pollinators, remote sensing to detect injured and sick livestock, controlling invasive species, and improving soil and water quality.
“Pennsylvania’s agriculture industry is challenged by rapid changes in climate, technology, and evolving animal and plant diseases,” said Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding. “Along with those challenges come opportunities to increase productivity, advance human and animal medicine, plant and environmental science, and food safety. Research is what fuels innovation and future prosperity.”