SACRAMENTO The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s (CDFA) Fertilizer Research and Education Program is seeking suggestions for research and education projects that will advance the agronomic and environmentally safe use and handling of fertilizing materials. Funding for these projects is provided through assessments on fertilizer sales in California, which currently generates close to $1 million per year for project funding and program activities. Supplementary funding is also available through a new partnership between CDFA and the California Integrated Waste Management Board for projects that include research and educational outreach on the use of urban-derived mulch or compost in agriculture.
Suggestions for research and/or education projects are being solicited in the following subject areas:
· Crop nutrient requirements - projects that determine or update nutrient requirements to improve crop yield or quality in an environmentally sound manner.
· Fertilization practices - projects that develop fertilization practices to improve crop production, fertilizer use efficiency or environmental sustainability.
· Irrigation interactions water management as related to fertilizer use efficiency and the reduction of ground and surface water contamination.
· Site-specific fertilizer technology demonstrating and quantifying applications for precision agriculture.
· Development, testing and demonstration of the use and benefits of practical field nutrient monitoring tools.
· Nutrient/pest interactions and nutrient/growth regulator interactions.
· Composts and cover crops - projects that examine the integrated use of commercial fertilizers with cover crops or agricultural composts to improve crop production or minimize losses of nitrogen or phosphorus in ground or surface water.
· Education and public information regarding the agronomic and environmentally safe use and handling of fertilizing materials.
In 2001, CDFA’s Fertilizer Research and Education Program assigned more than $700,000 in research funds to university, industry and other agricultural research institutions. Any individual or group is encouraged to apply.
Projects must be relevant to California conditions. To be considered, a project suggestion limited to two pages must be submitted by April 5, 2002 to the California Department of Food and Agriculture, Fertilizer Research and Education Program, 1220 N Street, Room A-472, Sacramento, CA 95814.
For additional information on the application process, visit the program’s web page at: www.cdfa.ca.gov/is/frep; or contact: Dr. Stephen Beam, CDFA, Fertilizer Research and Education Program at (916) 6535340, by fax, (916) 6532407, or email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814