The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) was established by Congress in the Agricultural Act of 2014, also known as the Farm Bill, and funding was renewed in the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018. In accordance with requirements in the 2018 Farm Bill, below is Stakeholder Notice with information about upcoming funding opportunities, the application review process and where to find the latest FFAR news and updates.
Upcoming Funding Opportunities
FFAR host numerous funding competitions to advance work on specific aspects of each Challenge Area. The Foundation also hosts four funding opportunities to support early-career scientists working in food and agriculture. These programs invest in scientific expertise today that will be critical to the food and agriculture industry in the future.
The New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research Award provides the early investment needed to launch new faculty members into successful careers in food and agriculture science. This program accepts nominations in January and anticipates announcing awardees the following fall.
The FFAR Fellows Programs supports graduate students using an interdisciplinary approach to career readiness. The Fellows pursue research related to FFAR’s Challenge Areas and are matched with industry mentors who provide career guidance. This programs further provides trainings to help students obtain the professional skills needed to excel in the workforce. Applications are accepted in winter and awards are announced over the summer.
FFAR’s Seeding Solutions Grants are an open call for applications for innovative and transformative research proposals that further the Challenge Areas and foster unique partnerships. The application process begins in the spring and awards are announced in winter.
FFAR and the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges offer a summer fellowship for veterinary students called the FFAR Vet Fellows. These fellowships allow veterinary students to pursue research at the intersection of global food security and sustainable animal production. The program expects to begin accepting applications in spring 2020.
The ROAR program support research and outreach in response to emerging or unanticipated threats to the nation’s food supply or agricultural systems. FFAR accepts ROAR applications throughout the year.
The National Academies of Science Prize in Food and Agriculture Sciences, established by FFAR and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, recognizes extraordinary contribution to agriculture. This Prize is awarded annually to mid-career scientists at US institutions and highlights the need for scientists advancing more productive, sustainable agriculture.
Application Review Process
FFAR employs a rigorous review process to ensure every grant awarded through the Foundation meets our extensive criteria for actionable, innovative science. FFAR typically evaluates and scores program proposals based on four categories of weighted review criteria:
- Novelty, Innovation and Originality (30%)
- Impact and Outcome (25%)
- Technical Merit and Feasibility (30%)
- Partnerships (15%)
At times, FFAR customizes review criteria and/or changes the weighting based on the program priorities. In such cases, the review criteria are outlined in the Request for Application. FFAR requests reviewers provide comments on criteria for evaluation after each review. This allows FFAR to continually improve the evaluation process.
The How We Work page offers more information about how programs are developed and how grants are awarded.
Finding the Latest FFAR News
FFAR regularly communicates with the media, stakeholders and the public through press releases, social media (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and LinkedIn), and a monthly e-newsletter. All press releases are distributed via email and featured on the website’s News section. FFAR also welcomes any questions emailed to email@example.com.
FFAR hosts a townhall-style Public Conversation each October to engage with the public and members of the food and agriculture community.
Additionally, FFAR highlights its yearly activities in the Annual Report. Past annual reports as well as summaries from earlier Public Conversations, governance documents and financial information can be viewed on the Governance section of the website.