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NAFA launches research program with first-ever request for proposals

Published on 25 May 2017

The National Alfalfa & Forage Alliance (NAFA) has released its first-ever request for proposals (RFP) to solicit projects for its U.S. Alfalfa Farmer Research Initiative.

NAFA’s RFP asks researchers to focus their proposals on NAFA established priorities, which include the following:

  1. Yield improvement
  2. Cutting management strategies
  3. Fertility, soil management, soil health, macro/micronutrients
  4. Forage quality improvements
  5. Weed management strategies
  6. Insect management strategies

The deadline for submitting proposals is Monday, June 26.

In 2016, the NAFA board of directors voted unanimously to begin the national checkoff to facilitate a farmer-funded program to advance industry research. The U.S. Alfalfa Farmer Research Initiative, implemented voluntarily by seed brands, is assessed at the rate of $1 per bag of alfalfa seed. One-hundred percent of the proceeds raised by the checkoff are devoted to research; no administrative fees will be taken.

“This is a watershed moment for NAFA. After many years of effort, it’s rewarding to see this finally come to fruition with the release of our first RFP,” said Beth Nelson, NAFA president. “We’re looking forward to funding research projects that alfalfa farmers view as priorities for the industry.”

Funding requests are capped at $50,000 and only one year of funding may be requested (additional funding will need to be applied for each year). All university, extension, ARS and non-profit researchers are eligible to apply. Once received, requests will undergo a proposal review process by NAFA board members or their designees to determine which proposals will receive funding. A full copy of the RFP can be found on the NAFA website.

NAFA strongly encourages alfalfa farmers to patronize checkoff-participating alfalfa seed brands to support the U.S. Alfalfa Farmer Research Initiative.  end mark

—From National Alfalfa & Forage Alliance

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