New USDA Program Supports Innovation in Agriculture
ABO members are among a new generation of innovators that are bringing solutions to global challenges like food production, water use and climate change. As these innovators garner more attention, Congress has just begun to develop more programs that can give their efforts a boost.
One that will be of interest to algae cultivators, product developers and researchers is the Agriculture Advanced Research and Development Authority (AGARDA), a new program created in the 2019 Farm Bill that will support innovations in food and agriculture.
Some of AGARDA’s objectives will include:
- early-stage research for innovations with application to agriculture products
- prototype testing
- assistance with product approval, licensure, and clearance
- assistance with the manufacturing and commercialization of products
- support R&D for plant pest countermeasures and veterinary countermeasures.
AGARDA is modeled after programs at the Department of Energy that have had great success supporting cutting-edge developments before they are commercially successful: the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Biomedical Advanced R&D Agency (BARDA), and the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E).
Any ABO member with an interest in pushing the envelope when it comes to innovating in agriculture should keep an eye on how AGARDA gets off the ground in the coming months.
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