College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences
WSU’s On Solid Ground – Tree Fruit, Spuds, Don’t Drift, Water Econ 101 – Feb. 13, 2013
WSU’s Big Ideas Campaign Continues to Flourish for Fruit
Cherry and stone fruit growers throughout the state have agreed to make a $5 million investment over the next eight years at WSU research and extension centers in Prosser and Wenatchee. This builds on a similar measure voted on by apple and pear growers in 2011 to galvanize cooperation between industry and WSU in response to the university’s historic fundraising effort launched in December 2010.
“The close partnership between Washington’s tree fruit industry and Washington State University continues to be transformational,” said WSU President Elson S. Floyd. “Working together for more than a century, we have helped to make Washington a world leader in tree fruit production. The assessment by cherry and stone fruit growers, in combination with the $27 million investment in WSU made by apple and pear growers in 2011, helps to ensure that our partnership in progress continues for an even brighter future for our state. We are extremely grateful for the industry’s confidence and investment in WSU.”
Washington State Department of Agriculture officials certified the election results Monday, Feb. 4. This substantial financial commitment comes at a time when the state’s $46 billion food and agriculture industry continues to increase its contribution to the state’s economy. Annually, the Washington tree fruit industry accounts for more than $7 billion of economic impact, with more than a third of that derived from exports.
Consumers will soon be able to leave potatoes in their pantries a good deal longer thanks to the development of technology discovered by WSU scientists in 2005 that is now approved by the FDA and registered with the EPA to keep tubers from sprouting. Canadian and European registrations have also been filed.
The agricultural products company American Vanguard Corporation licensed the patented application of organic compounds to postharvest potatoes from WSU and conducted seven years of testing via AMVAC Chemical Corporation. The commercial version of the sprout inhibitor is called SmartBlock, which the EPA classifies as a biopesticide.
SmartBlock represents a breakthrough approach in the treatment of postharvest potatoes because it offers safe, comprehensive, long-term storage control that growers and processors can easily apply using existing equipment. AMVAC will begin marketing SmartBlock in the United States immediately.
Rick Knowles, scientist and chair of the Department of Horticulture, and Lisa Knowles, assistant research professor of horticulture, are responsible for the research leading up to SmartBlock. They found that one application of a naturally-occurring food additive to potatoes after harvest inhibited sprouting from two to three months, and two to three applications lasted more than a year. Applications also left little residue.
About half of the 9.4 billion pounds of potatoes grown in Washington each year are stored to provide a continuing supply to fresh markets and processing plants. Most varieties begin to sprout about three months after harvest. Because the excess growth hastens deterioration and reduces overall quality, growers and processors in the Pacific Northwest spend an estimated $9 million annually to inhibit sprouting of stored potatoes, said Knowles.
The new technology provides an alternative to other compounds currently used for the same purpose, and is thus expected to facilitate expansion of fresh and processed product exports, particularly to markets with strict chemical residue limits.
WSU economists recently found that the Washington potato industry contributes $4.6 billion and 23,500 jobs to the state. Anson Fatland, director of WSU Intellectual Property, said “We are very pleased to have partnered with AMVAC on the SmartBlock technology. As a result of this very productive and collaborative research relationship, additional intellectual property was developed which resulted in worldwide patent protection.”
According to Dan Bernardo, WSU’s vice president for agriculture and extension and dean of CAHNRS, “This success exemplifies the high quality research being carried out by CAHNRS faculty that has significant impact on Washington potatoes.”
Avoid Herbicide Drift
Herbicide applicators are responsible for managing and controlling off-target drift. As spring–-and one of the two times of year when drift is most likely to occur-–approaches, WSU Extension educators are offering recommendations about how to avoid what can be critical damage to nearby crops, ornamental plants, humans, fish, wildlife, and water resources. Grapes, blueberries, caneberries, and nursery crops are especially sensitive to several herbicides used in agronomic crops, pasture, rangelands, forests, and rights-of-way.
WSU weed specialists advise that appropriate equipment setup, including the choice of droplet size and nozzle type, is necessary for safe and efficient application of herbicides. Other important considerations are weather conditions, cutoff dates, and formulations.
Read the rest of this story by WSU Extension weed scientist Drew Lyon and ag news writer Brian Clark at http://bit.ly/driftprevention. There you’ll also find a short audio clip available to use as a PSA.
WSU Extension economists understand that water issues can be contentious in arid regions such as central Washington. That’s why our experts wrote Understanding the Relationship between Water Price, Value, and Cost, a factsheet to bring you up to speed on common-–yet frequently misunderstood-–terms used to talk about water management.
Clearly communicating about the economics of water is dependent on adequate explanation and distinction between key words such as price, value, and cost. These terms are typically used to differentiate concepts within public policy forums for water reallocation, but non-economists (including producers as well as consumers) tend to use them interchangeably. Confusion over meanings can generate arguments and create unnecessary misinterpretations. This WSU Extension factsheet explains the differences and connections between price, value, and cost in the context of water, and when each concept is relevant and when it is not. The discussion includes the relevance of water rights.
CAHNRS is more than agriculture. With 24 majors, 19 minors, and 27 graduate level programs, we are one of the largest, most diverse colleges at WSU. CAHNRS Cougs are making a difference in the wellbeing of individuals, families, and communities, improving ecological and economic systems, and advancing agricultural sciences.
Washington State University has been awarded a five-year $2 million National Research Support Project grant to build and maintain a national system for sharing digital plant genetic resources. Known as NRSP10, the project is the tenth National Research Support Project in the nation.
How do we define nature, wilderness and conservation? Are our ideas about nature outdated? What lessons can evolution offer for modern agriculture? Are we “fueling a biotechnological bubble” by ignoring ecologically inspired ways to improve agriculture?
PULLMAN, Wash. - Scientists at Washington State University have been awarded $2.53 million to improve fruit quality and disease resistance of crops in the rosaceae family (apple, blackberry, peach, pear, rose, strawberry, sweet cherry and ...
Students have a variety of options to pursue masters and doctoral degrees. Many of these have very specific background requirements, so we suggest exploring the individual programs for academic guidelines.
Being a CAHNRS Coug is about having a life-changing experience and having fun along the way. With an endless array of subjects to study, students can explore a variety of topics until they focus on that area that truly excites them. We include ample opportunities to learn outside the classroom, because we not only believe it’s a better way to learn, it makes for a more meaningful and enjoyable college experience.
CAHNRS knows how to throw a party, and there is not greater time to celebrate than when our students return to campus. Free food (including Ferdinand’s Ice Cream), swag from each of our student clubs, activities, and a drawing for $1,000 scholarships—its all part of our annual Fall Festival. And we just don’t limit the event to our CAHNRS majors, we welcome everyone across campus to learn more about what our college offers.
The Center for Transformational Learning and Leadership makes it possible for students to secure that job-landing internship, experience another culture in the southern hemisphere, unlock their leadership potential through seminars and workshops, and find a mentor to coach them through their academic experience.
CAHNRS Office of Research
Agricultural Research Center
The goal of the Washington State University CAHNRS Office of Research is to promote research beneficial to the citizens of Washington. The Office of Research recognizes its unique land-grant research mission to the people of Washington and their increasing global connections. The CAHNRS Office of Research provides leadership in discovering and applying knowledge through high-quality research that contributes to a safe and abundant food, fiber, and energy supply while enhancing the sustainability of agricultural and natural resource systems.
By Sylvia Kantor, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences
PULLMAN, Wash. – Scientists at Washington State University have concluded that nondigestible compounds in apples – specifically, Granny Smith apples – may help prevent disorders associated with obesity. The study, thought to be the first to assess these compounds in apple cultivars grown in the Pacific Northwest, appears in October’s print edition of the journal Food Chemistry. “We know that, in general, apples are a good source of these nondigestible compounds but there are differences in varieties,” said food scientist Giuliana Noratto, the study’s lead researcher. “Results from this study will help consumers to discriminate between apple varieties that can aid in the fight against obesity.” MORE
PULLMAN, Wash. – Drug abuse, acts of rampage – what’s really the matter with kids today? While there are many places to lay blame – family, attitude, peers, school, community – a new study shows that those risks vary in intensity from kid to kid and can be identified.
Scientists at Washington State University and Pennsylvania State University have found a way to spot the adolescents most susceptible to specific risk factors for delinquency MORE
By Sylvia Kantor, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences
PULLMAN, Wash. – With global food demand expected to outpace the availability of water by the year 2050, consumers can make a big difference in reducing the water used in livestock production.
“It’s important to know that small changes on the consumer side can help, and in fact may be necessary, to achieve big results in a production system,” said Robin White, lead researcher of a Washington State University study appearing in the journal Food Policy. MORE
Hulbert Hall 403 PO Box 646240 Pullman, WA 99164-6240 PH: 509-335-4563 FAX: 509-335-6751 email@example.com
With 39 locations throughout the state, WSU Extension is the front door to the University. Extension builds the capacity of individual, organization, businesses and communities, empowering them to find solutions for local issues and to improve their quality of life. Extension collaborates with communities to create a culture of life-long learning and is recognized for its accessible, learner-centered, relevant, high-quality, unbiased educational programs.
Washington State University Extension 4-H Youth Development is collaborating with Seattle Parks and Recreation to provide the residents of Seattle, King County, and beyond, the benefits of an educational partnership for school districts, non-profit organizations, institutions of higher education, businesses, and the public, resulting in the strengthening of community life.
The WSU Extension Strengthening Families Program for Parents and Youth Aged 10-14, is a parent, youth, and family skills-building curriculum that focuses on strengthening parenting skills, building family strengths, and preventing teen substance abuse and other behavioral problems.
Women, Farms & Food is an innovative project that addresses the risk management needs of women producers using technology and follow-up skills-based workshops. The Women in Agriculture program began in Washington State in 2005, with annual state conferences offering speakers, practical advice, collaborative discussion, and networking opportunities.
The WSU College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS) Office of Alumni & Friends is a service unit dedicated to promoting philanthropic support for the college’s research, teaching, and extension programs.
CAHNRS seeks $190 million through the Campaign for WSU. This unprecedented fundraising goal is managed through the CAHNRS Office of Alumni and Friends. If you would like to learn more about the CAHNRS’s fundraising priorities, please explore our website or meet the team.
Through the Campaign for Washington State University, CAHNRS and WSU Extension will play a major role in defining answers to complex issues through truly big ideas—feeding the world, powering the planet, and ensuring the health and well-being of children, families, and communities. See below to learn more about how we are addressing these issues in our strategic and on-going initiatives and development of world-class students.