On March 28th, 92 national and state agriculture organizations, including FASS, wrote to the leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittees in support of $10 million in fiscal year 2015 for Section 1433 Continuing Animal Health and Disease, Food Security, and Stewardship Research, Education and Extension Programs. The Section 1433 program was expanded in the recently passed farm bill to include a new competitive grants program focused on the high priority research areas of food security, one health and stewardship. The new program was established to help reverse the trend of decreasing federal investments in animal science. A copy of the final letter can be found here.
The Senate Appropriations Committee will be holding a hearing on April 29th entitled "Driving Innovation through Federal Investments". Witnesses for the hearing include officials from the Office of Science and Technology Policy, National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. In addition to hearing from government witnesses, the committee invited outside testimony from interested groups. FASS has capitalized on this opportunity and submitted testimony about the importance of the federal investment in animal science. FASS testimony highlights the focal areas identified by the Farm Animal Integrated Research (FAIR) 2012 process and articulates the need for federal investments to support research in food security, one health and stewardship. More information on the hearing can be found here.
FASS Washington Representative Lowell Randel co-authored a chapter of the AAAS Report XXXIX: Research and Development FY 2015 which is published annually by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The report is a collective product of the Intersociety Working Group, composed of more than 30 leading science societies and other non-governmental organizations in the science and innovation policy space. This marks the fifth year that Lowell has participated in the development of Chapter 27 which takes an interagency look at the President’s budget related to food, nutrition, agriculture and natural resources. A copy of Chapter 27 can be found here.
The National Academies of Science (NAS) has scheduled a second meeting of the committee conducting the study Considerations for the Future of Animal Science Research. The meeting will take place in Washington, DC on May 13th. Scheduled speakers for the open session include:
- Henning Steinfeld, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations [Via teleconference]
- Russell Cross, Texas A&M University
- Montague W. Demment and Anne-Clair Hery, Association of Public & Land-grant Universities
- Jude Capper, Montana State University [Via teleconference]
- Raymond Anthony, University of Alaska-Anchorage
- Randy Brummett, World Bank
- Clare Narrod, University of Maryland
More information on the study can be found here.
FASS Makes Nominations to FFAR Board
Efforts are underway to formalize the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), authorized by the recently passed farm bill. The farm bill directs the National Academies of Science (NAS) and USDA to name the initial board of directors for the foundation. NAS has been tasked with naming 8 scientists to the board, while USDA will name 7 industry representatives to the board. The FASS Science Policy Committee has submitted nominations to both NAS and USDA in an effort to ensure that the animal sciences are well represented on the board. The NAS solicitation announcement can be found http://dels.nas.edu/global/banr/ffar. The USDA announcement in the Federal Register can be found here.