September 18, 2020

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is now accepting grant applications for applied crop research that improves agricultural product quality, quantity, or value in Minnesota. The MDA anticipates awarding up to $1,000,000 in total.

Minnesota-based organizations with agricultural research capabilities may apply for funding to improve the state’s $10 billion crop production industry. Grants reimburse up to the total cost of a project, with a maximum award of $250,000 per project.

Research projects with an outreach plan that addresses inequities and/or disparities experienced by diverse racial and ethnic communities including Native American tribal communities, and rural communities with limited economic opportunities will receive bonus points. In addition, preference will also be given to applicants researching crops that have limited access to other research funds.

Applications for the Agricultural Growth, Research, and Innovation (AGRI) Program Crop Research Grant received by 4 p.m. Tuesday, November 24, 2020 will be included in the competitive review process. The online application is available at the AGRI Crop Research Grant website.

Funding for the Crop Research Grant was established through the AGRI Program which administers grants to farmers, agribusinesses, schools, and more throughout the state of Minnesota. The AGRI Program exists to advance Minnesota’s agricultural and renewable energy sectors.

Brief descriptions of projects awarded last year are below and include developing a new rotational crop for turf-seed producers, optimizing crop production, and plant breeding of fine fescue and potatoes.

2020 Crop Research Grant Recipients

Project Title Organization Name Researcher/Contact
Use of Cover Crops to Optimize Early Spring Soil Moisture in Raised Bed Systems

University of Minnesota

Cindy B.S. Tong
Hybrid Rye - A new rotational crop for the turf-seed growing region of northern Minnesota Minnesota Turf Seed Council Dave Grafstrom /Marvin Zutz
Optimizing Hard Red Spring Wheat Seeding Rates in On-Farm Trials Minnesota Wheat Research and Promotion Council Melissa Carlson
Residue Management in Kernza® and MNHD Hard Fescue Seed Production University of Minnesota Nancy Jo Ehlke
Chili Pepper Production, Quality, Drying Methods, and Market Viability for Minnesota Farmers University of Minnesota Natalie Hoidal
Assessing Characteristics, Quality, and Flavor of Kernza® Malt Sprowt Labs Christopher Abbott
Increasing Multi-year Seed Production of Fine Fescue Through Plant Breeding and Agronomics University of Minnesota Eric Watkins
Establishing New Opportunities for Fresh Market Specialty Potatoes in Minnesota University of Minnesota Laura Shannon /Thomas Stefaniak



Media Contact
Larry Schumacher, MDA Communications