Revitalizing Pennsylvania Agriculture: State Pumps $2.232 Million into Research & Development

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HARRISBURG, PA — In a move aimed at sustaining and growing Pennsylvania’s impressive $132.5 billion agriculture industry, the Shapiro Administration recently announced a funding injection of $2.232 million to innovative agricultural research. These funds are directed at comprehensively addressing the rising complexities and challenges pertaining to climate change, soil and water conservation, animal care issues, and development of plant-based solutions for human health threats.

The importance of investing in targeted research to preempt and resolve impending challenges has been underscored by Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. He noted, “Pennsylvania-based research institutions are on the cutting edge of exciting developments in organic and regenerative agriculture. They are also envisioning the technology we need to continue to be a national and world agriculture leader.”

Governor Josh Shapiro describes agriculture as a ‘pillar of opportunity’ in Pennsylvania’s economy, and this fresh round of research funding exemplifies the administration’s commitment to supporting the industry’s growth. The currently funded research grants via the PA Department of Agriculture are developing novel solutions to tackle animal and plant diseases, increase sustainable farming methods, advance human & animal medicine, apply new technology in food safety, and protect vital pollinators.

Among the beneficiaries of the funding are the Pennsylvania State University Center for Agricultural and Shale Law and the Agriculture and Environment Center, each receiving $100,000 and $500,000 respectively. Other important projects include research on the effects of acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin) on Holstein dairy cows, a study on reducing methane emissions from dairy calves, and research into the transmission of antibiotic-resistant genes from humans to animals.

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Additionally, programs aimed at mitigating the impacts of climate change, testing the effectiveness of hairy vetch and industrial hemp for land remediation, determining suitable lands for solar energy production, and investigation into causes of lameness in finisher pigs also secured funding.

These research endeavors not only promise to reshape the face of Pennsylvania’s agriculture industry but also have far-reaching implications for broader society, the economy, and the environment. By linking the health of our land, animals, and people, these wide-ranging studies anticipate creating a more sustainable and healthy future for Pennsylvanians.

In the words of Secretary Redding, these projects are “the first critical step toward solving today’s most costly and complex challenges.” Pennsylvanians can look forward to benefiting from these innovative strides in agriculture, solidifying the Keystone State’s position as a national and global leader in the field.

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