Michigan’s plant initiative seeks research and education proposals

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Scientists and educators wMSU, Project GREEEN logoho focus on plant agriculture have an opportunity to apply for funds being made available by Project GREEEN (Generating Research and Extension to meet Economic and Environmental Needs) at MSU. Project GREEEN, Michigan’s plant agriculture initiative, has issued its request for proposals (RFP) for fiscal year 2012-2013.

Steve Lovejoy, interim co-coordinator of Project GREEEN and associate director of MSU Extension, said more than $2 million will be available for funding research projects in 2012.

“We’ve designated about $1 million for new projects,” Lovejoy explained. “The remaining funds will go toward the continuation of multiyear projects that were started in fiscal years 2010 and 2011.”

Ray Hammerschmidt, interim co-coordinator of Project GREEEN and chairperson of the Department of Plant Pathology, said successful proposals must clearly demonstrate the projects’ benefits to Michigan’s plant-based agriculture industries and be very good research.

“Funding is limited this year compared with previous years,” Hammerschmidt said. “Our review panel consists of scientists, educators and industry professionals, and they will help ensure that only the top tier proposals will be funded. We anticipate a high level of competition among proposals because of less funding.”

An RFP application and a complete listing of updated plant commodity research and educational priorities are available at www.greeen.msu.edu.

Proposals will be accepted in four categories: basic research, applied research, Extension/education/demonstration and seed grants. All Michigan State University and Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development employees are eligible to apply.

Proposals and letters of support must be submitted through the Project GREEEN website by 5 p.m. Jan. 12, 2012. Awards will be announced in March, and funds will be available in May.

Founded in 1997, Project GREEEN is a cooperative effort between plant-based commodities and businesses together with MSU AgBioResearch, MSU Extension the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development to advance Michigan’s economy through its plant-based agriculture. Its mission is to develop research and educational programs in response to industry needs, ensure and improve food safety, and protect and preserve the quality of the environment.

Photo: MSU, Project GREEEN logo

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