Health-Agriculture Nexus

The Health-Agriculture Nexus Challenge Area supports pioneering research to reduce food and nutrition insecurity, decrease food waste and loss and improve human health.

Program Contact

Dr. Constance Gewa

Development Contact

Catherine Maxwell

Our research focuses on:

  • Increasing access to healthy food
  • Reducing and redirecting food loss and waste
  • Advancing plant and animal production systems
  • Breeding better nutrition
  • Improving processing and packaging technologies
  • Predicting supply and demand for crops and food animals

Learn more about our Health-Agriculture Nexus research goals.

Advancing UN Sustainable Development Goals

Health-Agriculture Nexus supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), 17 global goals to enhance peace and prosperity, eradicate poverty and protect the environment. Specifically, this research bolsters the following SDGs:

Why Are We Tackling Health-Agriculture Nexus Challenges?

While the US food system is the highly productive, certain aspects of our food system can endanger health. One in eight Americans face food insecurity, meaning these individuals are unable to consistently attain affordable, nutritious food. Food insecurity is also closely linked to obesity, which affects more than 40 percent of the US population and leaves these individuals vulnerable to many diet-related diseases. Simultaneously, huge quantities of nutritious food is wasted regularly, and our food system is laden with processes that creating unique environmental and health challenge.

Many initiatives seek to address these challenges independently. The Health‐Agriculture Nexus Challenge Area takes systems-level approaches to address food system inefficiencies, reduce food and nutrition insecurity and improve human health.

Our Health-Agriculture Nexus research evaluates food system interactions to identify actionable solutions. The results increase access to nutritious foods, reduce food loss and waste, advance plant and animal production systems for better nutrition and affordability and address diet-related health concerns. We look to discover pioneering approaches for transitioning existing plant and animal systems, focusing on sustainably increasing capability for producing affordable nutritious food for all.

Ultimately, our research addresses food system inefficiencies and promotes production practices that improve food and nutrition security while reducing food loss and waste.

We Pioneer Health-Agriculture Nexus Research

Congress established FFAR to increase public agriculture research investments, fill knowledge gaps and complement USDA’s research agenda. Our public-private partnerships match federal funding from Congress with private funding, delivering a powerful return on taxpayer investment.

Our grants, programs and consortium use this funding to improve the food and agriculture system, benefiting Americans and people around the globe.

Learn more about our Health-Agriculture Nexus grants, programs and consortium.

Health-Agriculture Nexus Awarded Grants

Food Waste Challenge

Awarded Amount $1,000,000   
Year 2023
Matching Funders The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation

Food Waste Challenge

Awarded Amount $1,000,000   
Year 2023
Matching Funders The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation

Food Waste Challenge

Awarded Amount $1,000,000   
Year 2023
Matching Funders The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation

See all Health-Agriculture Nexus Grants

Health-Agriculture Nexus Grant Programs

Seeding Solutions

Rapid Outcomes from Agricultural Research

Health-Agriculture Nexus Consortium

The Latest


As an inclusive organization, we host Insights from thought leaders across for food and agriculture community on DEI. Learn more about their unique experiences and perspectives.

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