US - The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded $16.5 million in grants to support research into methods for boosting agriculture productivity and ensuring food security in the face of pests, diseases and a changing climate.
In addition, USDA announced that it is seeking applications for the next round of projects, which will focus on pollinator health and plant and animal phenomics.
The grants are made available through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), administered by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).
"In the face of diminishing land and water resources and increasingly variable climatic conditions, food production must increase to meet the demands of a world population projected to pass 9 billion by 2050," said Mr Vilsack.
"Funding in research to respond to these challenges should be considered as an investment in our nation's future, an investment which will pay big dividends in the years to come."
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