U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Chief Scientist Chavonda Jacobs-Young is announcing an investment of $21.6 million in scientific research for small businesses to further develop transformative agricultural solutions.

“Small businesses, particularly rural and agricultural enterprises, play a vital role in the American economy. They embody the entrepreneurial spirit that America was built upon,” said Jacobs-Young, who is also USDA’s under secretary for research, education and economics. “This latest investment strengthens federal research and development support for small businesses, including women- and minority-owned businesses,  and enhances USDA’s efforts to rapidly scale innovation across the food supply chain.”

This investment is part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program that targets early-stage private-sector projects. Grant funding will support 34 research projects that propose innovative and disruptive solutions on topics ranging from food science and nutrition to natural resources conservation.   

“The projects we’re supporting demonstrate scientific originality, technical feasibility and strong commercial potential,” said Acting NIFA Director Dr. Dionne Toombs. “With this research, our small business partners are helping solve some of our most vexing agricultural problems.”

View the complete list of the 34 funded Small Business Innovation Research projects:

  • Forests and Related Resources (2 awards, $1,299,734)
  • Plant Production and Protection (Biology) (1 award, $650,000)
  • Animal Production and Protections (3 awards, $1,899,999)
  • Conservation of Natural Resources (5 awards, $3,249,849)
  • Food Science and Nutrition (5 awards, $3,192,035)
  • Rural and Community Development (4 awards, $2,498,235)
  • Aquaculture (3 awards, $1,889,445)
  • Biofuels and Biobased Products (3 awards, $1,950,000)
  • Small and Mid-Size Farms (4 awards, $2,499,790)
  • Plant Production and Protection (Engineering) (4 awards, $2,549,665)

To learn more about the USDA, visit www.usda.gov. For more about USDA NIFA, visit https://www.nifa.usda.gov/.

Source: USDA