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 A Magazine of the Agricultural Research Program at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

[Click to view the rest of the researcher interviews]

Research magazine volume 8Vol. 8, 2011

Administrator's Desk - From economy to ecosystem, the land-grant mission connects the dots

A strong economy is often described as one that "makes, creates and innovates." To this I would add, it is also one that educates. As a land-grant
university, we cannot be "makers." That's the province of private industry. But we can improve on what we do best: innovate and educate.

Research is making mushroom production a year round opportunity
Growing in the great indoors
Researchers smell opportunity in hog waste
From waste stream to revenue stream
Undergraduate Research Scholars Program

Young scientists address issues in economics, health, soils, animal feed
[View Video Interviews]
Health science's new frontier
A look at food safety, functional foods, inactivating allergens, food fiber, designer biochar
Building capacity

USDA funded projects in the School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences

re: search magazine 2009 volume 6Vol. 7, 2010

Administrator's Desk - Cultivating Minds
The School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences has launched a new Undergraduate Research Scholars Program this year, which has potential to increase the ranks of minority scientists and launch individuals onto successful career paths.

Equine education
Survey shows education is a pressing need in N.C.’s horse industry.
“Eat your veggies!”
Researchers use play to encourage preschoolers to follow Mom’s advice. [View Video Interview]
Job preparedness
Communication, character skills rate highest with ag industry employers.
Profiting in poinsettias
An economist with the Agricultural Research Program presents evidence suggesting that poinsettia growers might profit more by selling less.
Biological engineering students turn Aggie blue and gold into GREEN
“Greening of Sockwell Hall” project spurs sustainability movement at N.C. A&T. [View Video Interview]
Small farm success
What makes a small farm succeed? Researchers in the Department of Agribusiness,
Applied Economics and Agriscience Education hope to find out in a three-year study, “Factors Influencing
Successful Small-Farm Operations in North Carolina.”

Corn woes
Alternative feed could help hog industry.
STUDENT Projects
A synopsis of student research projects in the Agricultural Research Program.

re: search magazine 2009 volume 6Vol. 6, 2009

Administrator's Desk
Cooperation strengthens economies everywhere
Post-harvest technologies
Post-harvest technologies improve safety and add value to fresh produce.
An agroforestry project that marries forestry with farming — and scientific research with international development — is beginning to bear fruit.
[View Video Interview]
The food environment in N.C.
Study shows connections among obesity, fruit and vegetable consumption and access to supermarkets.
Green fuels
Biological engineers with the Agricultural Research Program are seeking ways to make cellulosic ethanol (CE) production commercially viable for North Carolina.
Miraculous microbes
Science might never find the fountain of youth, but a fountain of health could one day be as close as your dairy aisle.
Making sense
New consumer testing lab brings science closer to markets.
Feed and fowl
Researchers from three different disciplines have developed a poultry feed that could improve
post-molt egg production and bird health.
[View Video Interview]
High tunnels, high profits
Helping farmers transition to organic by using unheated greenhouses.
Organic markets
Study examines retail market for organic food.
Active Projects
A synopsis of projects in the Agricultural Research Program.

Re: search magazine 2008Vol. 5, 2008

Director’s Desk
Economic development depends on human development
SAES adds Center for Post-Harvest Technologies to research repertoire
One of the most promising new initiatives to emerge from the Agricultural Research Program, the Center of Excellence for Post-Harvest Technologies, began operations in June at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis.
The persistence of poverty
Two rural sociologists in the Agricultural Research Program are shedding new light on the Southern Black Belt
Vine prospects
Economist’s study indicates the potential in wine grapes, even for small growers
Functional foods[View Video Interview]
From banana yogurt to carrot juice, food microbiologist seeks new vehicles for probiotics
Better business
Economists assist rural entrepreneurs
Groundbreaking cooperative fueled by biological engineering[View Video Interview]
One of North Carolina’s point men leading the march to new energy sources earned his stripes with biofuels research
Predatory lending hits home
Researchers examining lending patterns in rural N.C.
A Breed Apart
A hog research scientist at N.C. A&T embarks on breeding project
New Blood
Natural pork producers’ cooperative raising standards of product

Vol 4, 2007
Directors Desk: Industry partnerships bring research to fruition
Science is all about asking questions, and in the Agricultural Research Program
at N.C. A&T State University, we frequently ask ourselves,“How can we ensure that the
work we do in our laboratories improves the well-being of the farming community, families and consumers, the economy and the environment?”

Controlling Growth: Plant biotech helps green industry commercialize plants

A plant biotechnologist in the Agricultural Research Program is improving the production efficiency of two ornamental shrubs that have a history of being difficult or impossible to commercialize.
Peanut Better
Dr. Mohamed Ahmedna would like to see a day when every child — allergic or not — can enjoy a healthy, nutritious peanut butter sandwich. That day might arrive sooner instead of later, thanks to a process that he has perfected to inactivate allergens in peanuts.
Mastitis Markers
A genomics researcher in the Agricultural Research Program at N.C. A&T is exploring the bovine immune system in hopes of one day contributing to antibiotic-free treatments for mastitis.
Longer Life
A packaging technology for exotic mushrooms that is being researched by the
Agricultural Research Program could be a boon to the small but growing shiitake
industry in North Carolina.

Ag. research produces University’s first spin-off company
The discovery of a rare antibodybinding protein in the Agricultural Research Program laboratories has given rise to N.C. A&T’s first spin-off company.
Childhood eating habits: Study to examine eating habits of young children and families
Overweight is now considered America’s number one killer, outpacing even smoking as the top public health issue facing the United States. But overweight and obesity are no longer the afflictions of the middle-aged couch potato. Overweight increasingly affects young children at alarming rates and with troubling consequences for their developmental years.
Asian vegetables
With tobacco in decline due to global competition and the end of the tobacco subsidy program, limited-resource farmers in North Carolina and throughout the Southeast are trying alternative crops, including specialty vegetables.
Tracking truffles
Research into the DNA of a high-value soil fungus in N.C. A&T’s Agricultural Research Program has spurred the creation
of a new biotech business to serve and support truffle growers.

Progress Report

Vol 3, 2006 - Launch interactive version or select individual stories below.
Directors Desk: Change is in the air
When The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching announced its most recent changes in classifying the nation’s colleges and universities, North Carolina A&T found itself at the top.
Ag Research Program To Partner in Biopolis

Innovations in post-harvest technology from the Agricultural Research Program (ARP) will be making the journey from laboratory bench to grocery-store shelf much more quickly. That’s because the ARP will be a partner with other top research universities in North Carolina in a new worldclass biotechnology research center now under construction by Dole Foods in Kannapolis, N.C. — about an hour south of the N.C. A&T campus.
A Rare Breed Poultry researcher focuses on small producers
In the new Poultry Research Complex at the University Farm, Dr. Willie Willis
is designing new research projects to assist North Carolina’s most important
agricultural industry.

What Does Free Trade Spell for North Carolina Agriculture?
In the present era of free trade, it’s no secret that Wall Street is winning and unskilled workers are losing. But how is North Carolina’s agriculture sector faring?
After the Harvest
Food scientists in the Agricultural Research Program (ARP) are developing new post-harvest technologies that could help small-scale growers develop new markets for their produce. Dr. Chung Seo, professor of food science, has developed a small-scale vegetable processing system for sanitizing vegetables that uses ozone and chlorine dioxide.
Rx for agriculture
When Dr. Ipek Goktepe began studying triazole exposure on farm workers last summer, she set out with an open mind and armed with educated guesses, but prepared to have her assumptions challenged by what she found in the field.
Following the Leaders
Leadership development is a hot topic in the business world, but very little research has ever been conducted on the subject in rural communities.
Tracking No-Till
It has long been known in the agricultural community that no-till farming conserves soil and reduces runoff. But less clear has been the effect of no-till over the long term: Just how long can the surface remain unbroken before soil density causes diminishing crop yields?
Farm Improvements Continue
Upgrades and improvements to the University Farm are helping to insure that N.C. A&T’s largest classroom accommodates research and instruction relevant to today’s agricultural industry.
Patents and Publications

Vol 2, 2005 - Launch interactive version or select individual stories below.
Directors Desk: Research Making a Difference to Small Farmers
What crops or other income producing activities can replace tobacco income, and what do these farmers need to do to make a successful transition to growing or raising these alternative products?
Peanut Allergies

Food scientists with the Agricultural Research Program have developed a new fermentation process that significantly reduces the allergenicity of peanuts.
Waste Not
The Agricultural Research Program at N.C. A&T is finding ways to convert byproducts into value-added products.
Wetlands and Hog Waste
Natural filters remove pollutants from hog waste.
Rapid Detection for Truffles
Mushroom researchers with the Agricultural Research Program (ARP) are developing a monitoring tool that could help North Carolina growers of the exotic black truffle, a fungus that is considered to be the most lucrative agricultural product in the world.
Latino Health
A survey of Mexican immigrants in one North Carolina county indicates that obesity is becoming as big an issue for this population as it is for others.
Space Age Agriculture
If you want to know precisely what is happening on the ground, then your best bet is to get a bird’s-eye view from the air. That’s why precision agriculture might one day become the crop farmer’s best friend.
Healthy Stock
Animal scientists in the Agricultural Research Program (ARP) hope to shed light on how traditional remedies can fight disease and strengthen immunity. The research is becoming increasingly important as disease-causing organ- isms develop resistance to commercial drugs.
New Research, Old Remedies
An herb common throughout the Southeast and esteemed by rural folk for its tonic properties is beginning to gain the respect of modern medicine.
SAES Active Projects

Vol 1, 2005 - Launch interactive version or select individual stories below.
Directors Desk: Strengthening impacts through collaboration

Shiitake and Beyond
Scientists in the Agricultural Research Program want to jump-start a biotechnology industry based on exotic mushrooms.
University Farm: A Community Resource
In addition to research, the farm is used for Extension field days geared to the needs of small farmers looking for ideas for niche crops and techniques in sustainable agriculture.
Restoring Pork Flavor Through Diet, Genetics
A rare, feral pig might hold the secret to pork that not only tastes good, but is good for your heart and arteries too.
Biosensor Could Prevent Recalls
In an effort to prevent contaminated food from winding up in grocery stores, Agricultural Research Program (ARP) food scientists have invented an efficient biosensing technology for meat and poultry coming off the assembly line.
Microbes for Health
Food microbiologists in the Agricultural Research Program (ARP) are always searching for new weapons to use against harmful bacteria. When they aren’t engaged in this good fight, then they are developing new technologies to strengthen microbes that promote good health.
SAES Journal Publications


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