Hooray! The lab has received two USDA NIFA SAC grants to study Industrial Hemp!
The purpose of this research task is to build and characterize a genetically diverse compliant collection of feral hemp populations that are adapted to environmental conditions in the regions where they have been growing since escaping from agronomic cultivation. Through the engagement and use of citizen scientists and regional collaborators we will be able to cover more ground than any small group of individuals. This collection will serve as a public resource for the characterization of genes and mining of alleles for beneficial traits in breeding new cultivars.
The Midwestern Hemp Research Collaborative (MHRC), a joint effort of four land grant universities and one non-profit, seeks to address these challenges with regional data on hemp cultivar performance and compliance, agronomic best practices, pest incidence and severity. Our proposed project will leverage researcher-farmer partnerships to conduct participatory hemp cultivar and agronomic trials that will rapidly generate relevant, research-based information for the hemp industry.