Adding Value to Sugar Crop Trash & Byproducts

By Sandra Avant, ARS Office of Communications. The old adage “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” can be taken literally when it comes to residual material from sugar crops such as sugarcane, sweet sorghum, and sugar beets. These crops provide sugars, molasses, syrups, and other products to sweeten our foods. But...

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UF-lead team mobilizes to save super-rare tree on the brink of extinction

by Samantha Grenrock The Florida torreya is the most endangered tree in North America. And it may soon disappear entirely. But scientists such as the University of Florida’s Jason Smith are ready to fight for the species, which is a critical part of its native ecosystem in the Florida Panhandle. That’s why he and other leading...

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New tax law may grow on the agriculture industry

Mar 01, 18 New tax law may grow on the agriculture industry

Posted by in Scientific Studies

This article was prepared for FFVA members by Carl Stroh Jr. of Withum. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed by Congress and signed into law in December will affect Florida’s specialty crop producers in a number of ways. Included in the new law was a provision for citrus growers that provides a special temporary exception to the...

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Talking to a Wall: Offshore Drilling Plan Draws Protests

Mar 01, 18 Talking to a Wall: Offshore Drilling Plan Draws Protests

Posted by in Celebration, Scientific Studies

By: Trimmel Gomes TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – It isn’t clear whether Florida is still included in the Trump administration’s plan to expand offshore drilling, but the first and only hearing about it was in Tallahassee on Thursday. Groups opposed to the plan had to get creative in an attempt to share their views. With no...

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Could an 8 million-year-old gene help the citrus industry? UF researchers think so

By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, After 100 years of assertions about the roots of citrus, a global group of scientists – including a University of Florida professor – has traced the evolutionary history of Florida’s signature crop up to 8 million years ago in the Himalayas of Southeast Asia. Through analyses of 60...

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UF researchers work feverishly to manage south Florida’s biggest threat: Invasive termites

by Subterranean termites cause about $32 billion in damage worldwide. In fact, researchers with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences predict two of the most invasive subterranean termite species will expand their destructive range; meaning half the structures in South Florida...

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Leaving on a Bio-Jet Plane

By J. Kim Kaplan, ARS Office of Communications. One hundred and ten years ago when Wilbur Wright piloted the first U.S. passenger flight by taking employee Charles Furnas along for a ride, it’s unlikely that either of them ever dreamed of jet liners, let alone jets that use fuel made by yeast from switchgrass. Today, the airline...

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Florida’s Community Health Centers Thankful for Federal Funding

By: Trimmel Gomes TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – In a rare show of bipartisanship, Republican and Democratic Senate leaders announced a two-year budget deal that would increase federal spending for defense as well as key domestic priorities, including many health programs. The deal appears to offer most of what Democrats have been asking...

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UF/IFAS researchers awarded $10.5M to work on citrus greening resistance or tolerance

By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, GAINESVILLE, Fla. — With citrus greening devastating Florida’s $8.6 billion-a-year citrus industry, three University of Florida scientists will use $10.52 million in federal grants to study ways to help growers cope with the disease, including research on genetic editing that may...

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A fair fight for Florida farmers

Feb 01, 18 A fair fight for Florida farmers

Posted by in Agriculture, Scientific Studies

By Jack Payne •  On the face of it, it’s not a fair fight. Farming in Florida is hard enough, but then the rules of that fight constantly change. New bugs and diseases raid crops. Volatile markets say plant now while the weather says plant later. Consumers keep changing their minds about what to eat. New plant...

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Florida forest industry generates nearly $13B in annual sales, 36,000 jobs

Feb 01, 18 Florida forest industry generates nearly $13B in annual sales, 36,000 jobs

Posted by in Featured Stories, Scientific Studies

by Brad Buck GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida’s forest industry generated $12.55 billion in sales revenues in 2016, which translated to more jobs, according to a new UF/IFAS economic report. The sales figure is up about $4.77 billion from 2003, according to the report. More money sometimes means more jobs, and in the case of the...

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Avian flu found in wild duck; backyard flock owners asked to stay vigilant

At the end of December 2017, the H7 strain of avian influenza was found in a green-winged teal, a widespread North American duck, collected in McIntosh County on the Georgia coast. Wild birds are known vectors of avian influenza. Backyard and pastured poultry flocks are especially vulnerable when exposed to their wild cousins,...

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Weed Spotting By Drone

Jan 01, 18 Weed Spotting By Drone

Posted by in Agriculture, Scientific Studies, Tech

By J. Kim Kaplan When ARS agricultural engineer Yanbo Huang hears a drone in a field, he is not hearing the droning of bees pollinating plants nor the thrum of a tractor or combine. Huang and his technician Ryan Poe are just out flying their DJI Phantom drones. They are flying the drones—formally known as unmanned aerial vehicles...

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Solar energy entrepreneur invests in Florida 4-H youth

by Samantha Grenrock When Brandon Bing got up to speak in front of a crowd of 4-H alumni and supporters at the annual Florida 4-HGator Soiree last month, he admits, he was a little nervous. Not that he’s shy. Quite the opposite. The outgoing entrepreneur was jittery with the knowledge his company was about help more Florida youth...

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UF web tool helps South Carolina, Florida strawberry growers

By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Strawberry growers in Florida and South Carolina are reaping the benefits of a UF/IFAS web-based system designed to ward off two deadly pathogens, a new University of Florida study shows. That’s good news as Florida’s strawberry growers start a new season....

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NAFTA 2.0: Will the U.S. get it right?

Dec 01, 17 NAFTA 2.0: Will the U.S. get it right?

Posted by in Agriculture, Livestock, Scientific Studies

By: FFVA For two decades, Mexico has benefited from unfair trade practices while Florida farmers have suffered significant loss of market share.  Now with NAFTA negotiations under way with Canada and Mexico, Florida fruit and vegetable growers have a chance for getting some relief. “Our seasonal growing industries have suffered...

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UGA scientist to test viability of European truffles in Georgia

Dec 01, 17 UGA scientist to test viability of European truffles in Georgia

Posted by in Agriculture, Scientific Studies

By Julie Jernigan University of Georgia plant pathologist Tim Brenneman has studied the viability of truffles in the state’s pecan orchards for years. This winter, he will advance his research by introducing the European variety of truffles to Georgia pecan trees. “With collaborative researchers in Florida and Michigan, we are...

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Pilot research projects selected for funding to improve agricultural worker safety, health

by The Southeastern Coastal Center for Agricultural Health and Safety is awarding more than $56,000 to three pilot research projects to improve the safety and health of agricultural workers. Scientists will use mobile app monitoring to prevent heat-related symptoms among Hispanic farmworkers; research mental,...

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Volunteers travel hundreds of miles to rebuild 4-H farms hit by Irma

A fter Hurricane Irma swept through south Florida, Jeramy Smith, 4-H agent for UF/IFAS Extension Miami-Dade County, jumped in his car to survey damage at the three agricultural learning sites used by the county’s 4-H youth to raise plants and animals. The sites were in shambles, Smith said. In Homestead, fallen trees destroyed...

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See science in action as UF/IFAS celebrates 100 years of Citrus REC

by GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Oranges, grapefruit, tangerines and limes. Most people think of these as signature plants of Florida, but scientists have traced their origins back millions of years and across continental land masses, said Fred Gmitter, a UF/IFAS professor of horticultural sciences. Scientists can describe...

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