The Senate Ag Committee took up the topic of the research title in the Farm Bill during a hearing this week. Witnesses testified on the need to fund cutting-edge ag research, the power behind modern, high-tech agriculture. But USDA research chief Chavonda Jacobs-Young said funding for research is on the decline.
“Federal investments in agricultural research have declined by a third in the past two decades, falling far behind our international partners. Once the world’s leader, the United States now trails far behind other major nations in public agricultural research investments,” she said.
Jacobs-Young said existing ARS and NIFA programs are helping, but today’s ag needs more bite-size, usable technology, more ways to reduce huge input costs, more veterinarians, and healthier foods to reduce exploding health care costs. She said all of it will take more money.
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National Correspondent / AgNet Media, Inc.
Sabrina Halvorson is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster, and public speaker who specializes in agriculture. She is a native of California’s agriculture-rich Central Valley.