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New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research Award

Grants to USA Investigators for Research
in Food and Sustainable Agriculture

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Foundation for Food and Agricultural Research (FFAR)

Deadline Date:

02/28/18 4:59 PM ET


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Grants to USA investigators and faculty members at eligible institutions for continued food and sustainable agriculture research. Funding is intended to help noteworthy individuals advance research and their careers in the above fields. Applicants may be nominated by IHEs, research institutions, nonprofit organizations, or the US Department of Agriculture.

Within the scope of the New Innovator Program, investigators will have the freedom to explore new avenues of inquiry that arise during their research. Therefore, FFAR is interested in the program of research to be explored and its impact as opposed to a list of very specific aims. It is expected that through this program investigators will have the ability to pursue highly creative ideas, to firmly establish their early lines of research into important food and agriculture scientific areas and provide stability in funding during their critical early career years by reducing the time spent on writing applications.

Proposed research may be in the following areas:

Category 1 - Target Areas of Research:
- Achieving a Deeper Understanding of Nutrition and Healthful Food Choices
- Enhancing Sustainable Farm Animal Productivity, Resilience, and Health
- Improving Plant Efficiency
- Managing Food Production Systems to Enhance Nutritional Outcomes
- Optimizing Agricultural Water Use
- Spurring Food System Innovation
- Transforming Soil Health

Category 2 - FFAR Challenge Areas:
- Food Waste and Loss
- Healthy Soils, Thriving Farms
- Innovation Pathways to Sustainability
- Making “My Plate” Your Plate
- Protein Challenge
- Urban Food Systems
- Water Scarcity

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 167764

Number of Grants:

FFAR anticipates funding no more than ten awards between the two research categories.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Up to $100,000/year for up to three years. One-to-one cash match is required.

Term of Contract:

The award duration is up to 36 months (3 years). Applicants may ask for a longer duration, provided the total funds (FFAR request + Cash Match) do not exceed $600,000 and FFAR’s allocation does not exceed 50% of the total award amount.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

The following US institutions are eligible:
- Public/state controlled institutions of higher education
- Private institutions of higher education
- U.S. Nonprofit Research Institutions other than Institutions of Higher Education
- U.S. Department of Agriculture

In keeping with FFAR goals to reach a diverse and broad range of institutions and individuals who participate in its programs, the following types of higher education institutions are encouraged to apply for FFAR programs:
- Hispanic-serving Institutions
- 1890s Land Grant Institutions and other Historically Black Colleges and Universities
- Tribal Colleges and Universities
- Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions
- Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions

Faculty members at eligible institutions with the creative ideas, skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research program as Principal Investigator are invited to work with his/her organization to develop an application for support. Faculty member must have been hired on or after August 1, 2014, for his or her tenure-track or equivalent position and may work in any discipline or any department within the organization. Preference will be given to individuals near the onset of their independent research career and who are within eight years of receiving a Ph.D. or equivalent degree. Individuals with significant research experience prior to obtaining their faculty position will not be considered.

FFAR recognizes that agriculture and food sciences are highly complex, requiring individuals from a variety of disciplines to realize the potential in each field or research area. Particularly for early-stage investigators, collaborators are often essential for success. While this award is made to an outstanding early career investigator, applicants should include information regarding essential collaborators and include letters of support from those collaborators. In these letters, the collaborators should comment on the potential of the individual to achieve

- Construction and renovation costs are not allowed.
- Salaries of principal investigators are allowed for time not covered by institutional or other grant funds and effort should be commensurate with the research proposed.

Pre-Application Information:

The match share requirement is a one-to-one FFAR-to-awardee ratio. To receive an award, the match must be secured by the nominating institution prior to disbursement of award funds. Matching must be from a non-federal source and may not come from funds already designated for other purposes. For example, a faculty member’s startup package that was developed through employment negotiations may not be redirected to cover the match. In-kind matching is not permissible for this Program. Indirect costs are limited to 10% of the total award.

Institutions may submit up to two nominees to the 2018 New Innovator Award program. To coordinate and streamline submission of nominations by each institution, FFAR recommends that the nomination(s) be submitted through the organization’s Office of Sponsored Programs or a similar central office.

Key Dates:

- Nominations Due: February 28, 2018 at 4:59:59 pm ET. (Nominations must be made by the nominee’s institution. Up to two per institution. Self-nominations are not accepted.)
- Full Application Period Open: March 12, 2018 (Open only to nominees invited by FFAR to submit full proposals.)
- Applications Due: April 23, 2018 at 4:59:59 pm ET
- Anticipated Award Date: Late Summer 2018

More information on Challenge Areas:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Register and apply online:

Scientific and Grants Questions Contact:

Technical Help Contact:
800-875-2562 (Toll-free U.S. and Canada)
+1-703-964-5840 (Direct Dial International)

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming