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EPA Region 7 Awards Agricultural Initiative Grants

Release Date: 10/01/2007
Contact Information: Kris Lancaster, (913) 551-7557, lancaster.kris@epa.gov



Environmental News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Kansas City, Kan., Oct. 1, 2007) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Region 7 office has awarded two Strategic Agricultural Initiative grants totaling $89,234 to reduce the use of high-risk pesticides.

Projects chosen in fiscal 2007 were:

University of Missouri Extension, Columbia - $49,562: This project will promote integrated pest management (IPM) to Amish and Mennonite produce growers in central and northern Missouri. These religious communities are locally known for their fruit and vegetable production and their participation in farmers markets and produce auctions. Local University of Missouri extension agents will join with the Missouri Department of Agriculture and county soil and water conservation districts for this project.

Iowa State University, Ames - $39,672: This project will examine and promote essential oils as seed treatments for corn, soybeans and vegetables. Essential oils will be evaluated in field trials for their effect on preventing seed- and soil-borne fungal diseases. If found to be effective, essential oil use will be promoted through demonstration trials, journal articles, and a presentation at the Practical Farmers of Iowa annual winter conference. Practical Farmers of Iowa will partner with Iowa State University on this project.

The program supports grants for education, extension, demonstration, and studies targeting the use of IPM and sustainable pesticide practices in food production. Since 2001, Region 7 has awarded $461,394 to reduce the use of high-risk agricultural pesticides.

The Agricultural Initiative program is a prime example of a pesticide initiative that encompasses EPA's core principles to improve environmental conditions and protect human health while showing real-world results.

For more information, please contact Heather Duncan, EPA Region 7 SAI Coordinator, at (913) 551-7640.

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Learn more about the Strategic Agricultural Initiative at: www.epa.gov/pesticides/grants/aginitiative.htm