Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today joined the Maryland Congressional Delegation in announcing $299,159 in federal funding for the University of Maryland College Park to support research efforts focused on predicting and mitigating honeybee colony losses.
“Agriculture – a leading economic driver in Maryland – depends on healthy pollinators,” the lawmakers said. “This important investment in bee colony research will help deliver new and innovative solutions to protect bee populations across the state and help Maryland farmers.”
Pollinators are paramount to the agriculture industry in Maryland. According to the Maryland Department of Agriculture, “every third bite of food we eat can be attributed to these beneficial organisms.” This project will provide tools and methods for beekeepers to forecast and guard against colony losses, which can have a deleterious effect on nut, seed, fruit and vegetable production in Maryland.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced more than $4.7 million in research and extension grants as a part of the NIFA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, which is designed to find solutions to farmers’ current problems and needs. These projects will allow researchers to collaborate on a national, regional and local scale to support America’s agricultural community.