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NC State Extension to play key role in new “Ag Tech Corridor” project

Written By Justin Moore

The NSF-funded CROPS project will build an ag tech corridor to speed the sharing of research-based techniques and new technologies with farmers, particularly underserved farmers, new farmers and those with small acreage.

A $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) is kickstarting an effort to create an agricultural technology corridor from central to eastern North Carolina.

The project brings together researchers from six North Carolina universities and county agents and specialists with N.C. Cooperative Extension with representatives of the N.C. Biotechnology Center, RTI International and the N.C. Community College System.

North Carolina State University is among the partners on the NSF-funded Regional Innovation Engines project led by N.C. A&T State University. Other partner universities are East Carolina, Duke and Wake Forest, as well as the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The project – called Climate-Responsive Opportunities in Plant Science, or CROPS – aims to expand efforts to share research-based techniques and new technologies, particularly those that can help lower barriers to market entry for limited-resource farmers so that they can succeed in the face of climate change and develop entrepreneurially.

This spring, the partners will begin working together to create a plan to develop a 42-county Agricultural Tech Innovation Corridor that will enable improvements in agriculture to reach underserved areas of the state faster.


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