URBANA, Ill. U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and the University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) announced today that the university has received a $25 million federal grant to lead a consortium of universities and non-governmental organizations working to increase the food supply in Africa by improving soybean yields in five countries on the continent. The five-year grant is administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and will be led by University of Illinois agricultural economist Peter Goldsmith, who has 13 years of experience conducting research in similar latitudes in South America. The project is part of Feed the Future, the U.S. government's global hunger and food security initiative.
"Over the years, it has been my privilege to support the research that has made the University of Illinois a national leader in soybean study," said Durbin, who has secured over $5.2 million in support of soybean research at the university. "This $25 million grant will allow U of I and its partners to improve crop yields and increase the food supply in a part of the world that badly needs it. U of I is an international leader in researching and developing the next-generation crops that will help feed burgeoning populations across the world, and today's grant solidifies and further strengthens the role the university plays in fighting hunger across the globe. I congratulate U of I on this award and look forward to the benefits it will bring to the people of Africa."
"The people living in the poverty band in the lower latitudes of Africa struggle with low-productivity crops, isolation from markets, and access to low-cost sources of protein and oil," said Goldsmith. "There has also been a research void in soy production among developing countries. We've already seen soy as an economic engine creating agro-industrial growth in d
|Contact: Phyllis Picklesimer|
University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences