News Release
California Department of Food and Agriculture
Media Contact:
Steve Lyle, Office of Public Affairs, (916) 654-0462,
Release #03-065
Program to be part of Buy California Initiative
 SACRAMENTO—The California Department of Food and Agriculture announced today that it has awarded more than $2.8 million to the Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo College of Agriculture for the creation of the California Institute for the Study of Specialty Crops

 The institute, which will be part of Governor Davis’ Buy California Initiative, will sponsor research of economic, policy and regulatory issues surrounding California’s diverse specialty crop industry, which encompasses everything from nursery and dairy products to fruits, nuts and vegetables. The vast majority of crops grown in California are considered specialty crops.

 “This is a perfect match for the Buy California Initiative,” said CDFA Secretary William (Bill) J. Lyons, Jr. “Our objective is to improve the bottom line for all California specialty crops. The institute will help us achieve that in partnership with one of the finest agricultural universities in the nation.”

 The institute will sponsor hands-on research by faculty and students, which is consistent with Cal Poly’s mission of  “learning by doing.”  

 “The research that we do is very complementary to our teaching focus,” said Dr. Dave Wehner, dean of Cal Poly’s College of Agriculture. “And we think this research will demonstrate a direct benefit to California’s agricultural industry. We are very pleased to be participants in the Buy California Initiative.”

 The Buy California Initiative is a $70 million program that includes marketing, education and research. The $2.8 million that will be used to form the California Institute for the Study of Specialty Crop comes from a federal grant.


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California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814