South Dakota State University associate biology and microbiology professor Wanlong Li assesses the growth of two-week-old wheat seedlings. Through a new three-year, $930,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, Li hopes to improve wheat yields by increasing the size and weight of the kernels. Credit: Photo by Emily Weber/South Dakota State University.
South Dakota State University associate biology and microbiology professor Wanlong Li assesses the growth of two-week-old wheat seedlings. Through a new three-year, $930,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, Li hopes to improve wheat yields by increasing the size and weight of the kernels.

INSIDE WASHINGTON: Focus made on ag research

Ag research caucus in Congress offers opportunity to build momentum for increased ag research funding.

Ten years ago, momentum for reshaping how the U.S. Department of Agriculture funds research was building in Congress, and as a result, the 2008 farm bill established the Agriculture & Food Research Initiative (AFRI) within the agency.

With leadership from Reps. Rodney Davis (R., Ill.) and Jimmy Panetta (D., Cal.), the momentum continues to build for a stronger science capacity with their announcement to establish a bipartisan Congressional Agriculture Research Caucus.

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