Penn State Extension program to help private forest owners use prescribed fire

January 3, 2020

Pennsylvania state agencies that manage public forest lands increasingly have employed prescribed fire as a management tool, but significant challenges exist for private landowners to do the same. Now, Penn State Extension is launching a program to help them use prescribed fire, too.

Penn State scientist shares knowledge of soil science during visit to Ukraine

January 2, 2020

Ukraine is called the “breadbasket of Europe,” a moniker earned because of the fertile, black soils that blanket its landscape. As a longtime professor of environmental soil science in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, Rick Stehouwer has studied this famed “chernozem” soil, knowledge he acquired through books, lectures and lab samples. He had the opportunity to expand his understanding and see the soil for himself thanks to a philanthropic program through the college’s Office of International Programs that paved the way for him to visit the Eastern European country this past July.

Innovation is widespread in rural areas, not just cities

January 2, 2020

Conventional measures of innovation suggest that only big cities foster new ideas, but a more comprehensive measure developed at Penn State shows that innovation is widespread even in rural places not typically thought of as innovative. This “hidden” innovation brings economic benefits to businesses and communities, according to researchers, whose findings will help decision makers think in new ways about innovation and how they can support it.

Penn State receives student recruiting grant to spur interest in poultry studies

January 2, 2020

The Department of Animal Science in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences received a $10,000 student recruiting grant from the U.S. Poultry & Egg Harold E. Ford Foundation. The grant, made possible in part by Perdue Farms Inc., will be used to support youth programs in poultry and help recruit students interested in the poultry industry.

Craft-beer boom linked to record number of US states growing hops

January 2, 2020

Craft breweries may be fueling an unprecedented geographic expansion of hop production across the U.S., according to researchers at Penn State and the University of Toledo. Their findings suggest that as more craft breweries emerge around the country, so may new opportunities for farmers.

Penn State Extension has farm food safety education materials for Amish growers

December 20, 2019

Penn State Extension has developed curriculum materials for Plain Sect (Amish, Mennonite) growers to help them meet training requirements established in the federal Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule.

Penn State food scientist named Food Systems Leadership Institute Fellow

December 18, 2019

Robert Roberts, professor and head of food science in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, was one of 26 academic and industry leaders recognized as Fellows of the Food Systems Leadership Institute during a ceremony at the recent annual meeting of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities in San Diego.

Interdisciplinary lecture cultivates collaboration, leadership in plant health

December 18, 2019

The Department of Plant Pathology and Environmental Microbiology in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences held its inaugural Eva J. Pell Interdisciplinary Lecture on Plant Health on Dec. 9. The topic for this year’s lecture — “Where do Abiotic and Biotic Stress Overlap?” — focused on research that could mitigate the impacts of climate change on abiotic and biotic stress in plants.

Center for Security Research and Education announces spring 2020 grant program

December 16, 2019

The Penn State Center for Security Research and Education has announced its spring 2020 grant program to support security-related scholarship and educational programs at Penn State. University faculty and researchers are eligible to apply by Feb. 14, 2020.

Penn State Creamery student employees support cancer foundation, Toys for Tots

December 13, 2019

Although the student employees at Penn State’s Berkey Creamery usually brighten their customers’ days with delicious sweets, they never forget to give back during the holidays.

Agricultural science student pursues pollinator knowledge through internship

December 13, 2019

Xavier Mack, a student in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, spent his summer in the rolling hills of Nebraska. As part of his journey toward a future career in science communications, Mack, a sophomore majoring in agricultural science, participated in an internship program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Undergraduates showcase research, communication skills at symposium

December 12, 2019

Students throughout Penn State’s STEM-based majors brought two semesters of work to life at the recent WISER/MURE/FURP undergraduate research symposium, where they presented their research and answered questions from other students, staff and faculty, many from outside of their fields.

College of Agricultural Sciences forest technology wins $10K pitch competition

December 11, 2019

Innovators from the College of Agricultural Sciences upheld a winning tradition recently at the TechCelerator pitch competition hosted by the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Central and Northern Pennsylvania. The team was awarded a $10,000 investment for their fledgling enterprise, RealForests. Their victory makes RealForests the sixth team from the college to win one of Penn State’s most prestigious pitch competitions.

Extension offers tools to small-scale, raw-milk cheesemakers for safer products

December 10, 2019

Penn State Extension is now offering free online tools for small-scale cheesemakers to help them develop a food safety system for their facilities and conduct risk assessments of their processes. Printed copies are available for cheesemakers that do not have access to the internet.

Grant to fund workshops on conservation-based forest land estate planning

December 10, 2019

A Penn State project aimed at advancing conservation-based estate planning for forest landowners in two key regions of Pennsylvania is the beneficiary of an $80,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

Jonathan Lynch honored as ‘highly cited’ by science analytics group

December 10, 2019

Jonathan Lynch, distinguished professor of plant nutrition in the College of Agricultural Sciences, has been recognized as “highly cited” by the Clarivate Analytics Web of Science Group.

Creamery partners with Housing and Food Services to offer products at campuses

December 9, 2019

This semester, students at three Penn State campuses — Altoona, Hazleton and Behrend — are enjoying more than just Penn State Berkey Creamery ice cream at campus dining halls and convenience stores.

Eight will receive Distinguished Alumni Awards in 2020

December 9, 2019

Eight Penn State alumni selected by the Penn State Board of Trustees will receive the Distinguished Alumni Award, which is the University's highest honor presented to its alumni.

Impact of animal infectious disease to be focus of conference at Penn State

December 6, 2019

Exploring the emergence, spread and control of animal diseases is the focus of the inaugural Emerging Animal Infectious Disease Conference, scheduled for March 23-25, 2020, at the Wyndham Garden Inn, Boalsburg. The event will be co-hosted by Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and Penn State’s Center for Security Research and Education.

Novel way to ID disease-resistance genes in chocolate-producing trees found

December 6, 2019

An international team of plant geneticists has identified genotypes in cacao that are resistant to a major pathogen infecting one of the world’s most important cash crops. The findings point the way for plant breeders to develop trees that are tolerant of the disease.

The Arboretum at Penn State to host annual Winter Celebration Dec. 13

December 5, 2019

The Arboretum at Penn State invites the campus and surrounding community to welcome the holiday season at its annual Winter Celebration on Friday, Dec. 13.

NASA Pa. Space Grant accepting graduate research fellowship applications

December 2, 2019

The NASA Pennsylvania Space Grant Consortium is currently accepting applications to its graduate research fellowship program. The deadline to apply is March 1, 2020.

Bushmeat may breed deadly bacteria

December 2, 2019

People who eat wildebeests, warthogs and other wild African animals may be at risk for contracting potentially life-threatening diseases, according to an international team of researchers. The team analyzed samples of bushmeat — meat derived from wildlife — in the Western Serengeti in Tanzania and identified several groups of bacteria, many of which contain the species that cause diseases such as anthrax, brucellosis and Q fever.

Fourteen Penn State faculty recognized with lifetime honor

November 26, 2019

Fourteen Penn State faculty members in areas ranging from physics and engineering to entomology and plant science have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society. A lifetime honor bestowed upon members by their peers, a total of 443 individuals are being recognized for their extraordinary achievements in advancing science.

Grant will support expanded use of artificial intelligence for crop health

November 25, 2019

A research team developing artificial-intelligence-based solutions for diagnosing and managing threats to crop health has received a grant to expand the technology to assist more smallholder farmers around the world. Co-led by David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, the team developed a smartphone app that is capable of accurately diagnosing crop diseases without an internet connection.

Student Startups Shine at the Invent Penn State Venture & IP Conference

November 25, 2019

The Student Startup Showcase featured Penn State student startups which had participated in the Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program’s (PennTAP) Inc.U Competition or Invent Penn State’s Summer Founders program. Each of the student companies received $2,000 to help move their startups forward during the Oct. 3-4 conference, held at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center.

Forest farms could create market for ginseng, other herbs

November 25, 2019

A transition from wild collection of herbs to forest farming needs to occur in Appalachia to make the opaque, unstable and unjust supply chain for forest medicinal plants such as ginseng sustainable, according to a team of researchers who have studied the market for more than a decade.

International ag expert, Drohan, gives keynote address at conference in Ireland

November 25, 2019

Patrick Drohan, associate professor of pedology in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, gave a keynote address at the Catchment 2019 conference in Wexford, Ireland, in early November.

Penn State sophomore finds a future in agricultural education

November 22, 2019

Justin Kurtz’s first encounter with the FFA transformed the way he thought about agriculture, the world and, most importantly, himself. Kurtz, an agricultural and extension education major in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, first began working on a farm at the age of 10 in Kent County, Maryland.

Hunt deer despite disease, but be smart, safe, food safety expert counsels

November 21, 2019

The detection of chronic wasting disease in wild deer in several parts of Pennsylvania has some deer hunters wondering whether they should continue with their fall traditions, but a food safety specialist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences urges them to carry on — but to take precautions.

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