Supporters of Agricultural Research (SoAR) Foundation President Thomas Grumbly today applauded the President’s signing of a final FY 2019 budget that increases funding for USDA-NIFA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) by $15 million. Grumbly issued the following statement regarding the increase:
“The USDA-NIFA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) is the nation’s leading competitive public research program for agricultural science. The $415 million appropriated to AFRI will leverage federal funding for research critical to meeting the needs of producers and consumers.
While we appreciate this advancement, more is needed. AFRI has been authorized at $700 million for more than a decade in the Farm Bill, but has never received the full amount during the appropriations process. More funding will ensure we have an abundant, safe, and nutritious food supply in the face of climate change and other challenges. We cannot afford to leave critical research unfunded and U.S. farmers unsupported.
We look forward to working with committee leadership, its members, and all of Congress to highlight this important program during the next budget cycle, and will continue to support an increase in public funding for food and agricultural research.”