John D. Floros, New Mexico State University and Susan R. Wessler, University of California, Riverside
October 26, 2020
The next decade is pivotal to developing sustainable agriculture science and technology. Expanding populations burden agricultural systems stressed by climate change. Crop and livestock pests and disease endanger agricultural resiliency. These challenges call for bold action.
The National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine report, “Science Breakthroughs to Advance Food and Agricultural Research by 2030,” identifies promising scientific breakthroughs possible to advance food and agriculture science and calls for developing creative frameworks and tools.
With input from stakeholders, the report determines a vision that harnesses emerging trends, encourages interdisciplinary research and informs policymakers and academia. The report identifies five food and agriculture moonshots: microbiomes, gene editing, data analysis, sensors and biosensors and transdisciplinary collaborations.
The report involves the scientific community at large in describing scientific opportunities with high potential to create pioneering knowledge breakthroughs leading to new frameworks for research and the food and agricultural system. It recommends building significant research efforts around the following initiatives:
In addition, the report makes recommendations for achieving these moonshots. It encourages investing in physical and cyber infrastructure and applied research, engaging non-agriculture professionals and other talented individuals into food and agriculture research and supporting links between biophysical and socioeconomic sciences.
The study is made possible through funding from FFAR and the Supporters of Agricultural Research (SoAR) Foundation, with support from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture of the USDA, the National Science Foundation and others.
Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates.