Category Archives: USDA, Agriculture & Environment

Delaware Agriculture Week Jan. 14-17, 2019

The Delaware State Fairgrounds in Harrington returns as the venue for Delaware Agriculture Week, Monday, Jan. 14 through Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. A 14-year tradition, Delaware Ag Week draws thousands of attendees — farmers, growers, producers, crop advisors, extension agents and allied agriculture industries from across the Mid-Atlantic region.

Those attending select from a variety of morning, afternoon, and evening sessions, hear from experts on the latest research and best practice recommendations, earn continuing education credits, and network visit with more than 90 leading industry exhibitors demonstrating new agricultural technologies and products.

The sessions are taught by Cooperative Extension agents and specialists from UD, as well as from neighboring institutions and leading agriculture industry experts. A detailed agenda and credits offered is listed on the Delaware Ag Week website.

Delaware Ag Week is sponsored by the University of Delaware Cooperative Extension, Delaware State University Cooperative Extension, and the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

The four-day event covers a wide array of topics including presentations by the Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association of Delaware (FVGAD) on small fruits, fresh market and processing vegetables. Additional sessions include small flock and commercial poultry, small ruminants, grain crops, hay and pasture, beef cattle, precision agriculture, risk management, and a session on soil health and fertility.

A focus on farm health and vitality

“Health, access to care and health insurance affect the vitality of agricultural enterprises and farm and ranch families”, according to results from a national research project funded by the USDA. Beebe Healthcare will conduct a variety of screenings each day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Additionally on Wednesday, Westside Health Care’s mobile unit will be on hand to offer services. Click here for a full description of services offered.

 “At Ag Week, the agriculture industry is investing in their professional development to enhance their production skills as well as networking with industry personnel and colleagues,” said UD Cooperative Extension director Michelle Rodgers. “While already taking time off the farm, it seems like an effective time for producers and related ag industry individuals to also  invest in their own health and well-being.  The physical and emotional demands of agriculture requires that we also care for the individuals that are caring for the land.”

Off-site events

In addition to the events held in Harrington, the Delaware Urban Farm and Food Coalition (DUFFC) will host a session “Local Foods Grow Healthy Communities: An Evening with Ben Flanner, Brooklyn Grange.” on Thursday, Jan. 17, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Delaware Center for Horticulture in Wilmington. Networking and refreshments will begin at 5:30 p.m. General admission fee is $15 and registration is required. For more information, visit the Delaware Center for Horticulture website, or contact Carrie Murphy at (302) 831-2506.

Agriculture is Delaware’s largest economic driver, contributing an estimated $8 billion to the First State’s economy each year according to a University of Delaware study.

Exhibit Hall serves as the main meeting area with additional sessions in the Exhibit Board Room and Commodities Building. A trade show takes place in the Dover Building.


Illustration provided by Laura Russum,Delaware Department of Agriculture

AFRI Foundational & Applied Science Program Application

There has been a recently released request for applications (RFA) for the AFRI Foundational & Applied Science program.  The information needed to submit an application for the agricultural biosecurity coordination network funding is provided below; the complete RFA is also attached.

Program Area Priority – for Research, Extension, and Integrated Research Proposals related to plant and animal disease.

Tactical sciences are scientific assets that protect the integrity, reliability, and sustainability of the U.S. food and agriculture system from an array of known and potential threats from pests and diseases impacting plants and animals.  Current tactical science efforts are supported and conducted by a variety of public and private organizations, and NIFA provides research, extension and education support in three broad areas:
  •  Detection and diagnostics;
  • Regulatory systems; and
  • Development and deployment of new tools and management strategies for crop and animal protection


Letter of Intent Deadline – July 24, 2018 (5:00 p.m. Eastern Time)

Program Area Priority email address for Submission of Letter of Intent- 


Please note that the email address provided for letters of intent should only be used for that purpose.  Please direct questions to Dr. Rubella Goswami ( or Dr. Peter Johnson (

USDA Providing $8.89 Million for Risk Management Education

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) today announced the availability of $8.89 million for risk management education and training programs. The funding will allow organizations such as universities, county cooperative extension offices, and nonprofit organizations to develop training and educational tools to help farmers and ranchers learn how to effectively manage long-term risks and challenges.

Interested organizations may apply by submitting documentation required as part of the Risk Management Education Partnerships Request for Applications (RFA). The applications are then reviewed, and awardees enter into cooperative agreements that are managed by RMA’s Risk Management Education Division.

RMA is also seeking reviewers to objectively evaluate cooperative agreement applications against the published criteria in its Risk Management Education Partnership Program (RMEP) and Crop Insurance Education in Targeted States (TS) programs’ Requests for Applications (RFA). Reviewers are chosen based on their knowledge, education, and experience related to federal crop insurance; risk management in the agriculture sector (including production, legal, financial, marketing or human risk); and priority commodities or other criteria mentioned in the RFA. At RMA’s discretion, panels may be conducted on-line or in-person. If in-person, travel and per diem expenses will be covered by RMA.

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