After years of pushing for dollars and support, the National Alfalfa and Forage Association (NAFA) reports that Washington, DC lawmakers have funded eight critical U.S. research projects.
The projects are funded through the Alfalfa and Forage Research Program (AFRP).
Efforts to secure research funding traces began in the 2008 farm law where NAFA won language authorizing the AFRP. NAFA’s efforts to keep the AFRP language in the 2014 farm law were successful as well.
NAFA credits U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) and others for the $1.35 million appropriated to the AFRP.
After the money was secured, 23 groups submitted research proposals this summer. The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced the eight initial award recipients in October.
About 25 percent of the total funds will fund two alfalfa research projects through the University of California (UC).
The UC projects include:
$156,000 - research on subsurface drip irrigation, deficit irrigation strategies, and improved varieties to improve alfalfa water use efficiency under drought conditions – Dan Putnam, principal investigator.
$156,000 – yield improvement and fall dormancy characterization in alfalfa – Charlie Brummer, principal investigator.