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Timetable 2014-2015

Phase I Project Timeline

July 15 2014
Submit 4th Quarterly Report

August 15  2014
Submit Final Report

Phase II Project Timeline

May 2014
Project Awards Announced

July 1 2014
Phase II Projects Begin

June 30, 2015
Phase II Projects Conclude

For more information, contact Heather Friedrich, Program Manager, at sberries@uark.edu

Walmart Foundation’s $1.05 million donation fuels 2nd phase of strawberry initiative

A new $1.05 million donation from the Walmart Foundation is providing fuel for some of the researchers to prove their concepts in the field. From a competitive grants process, six projects working in nine states emerged to share $845,000 in funding from the new donation. Each of these new directions was grown from a $3 million donation from the Walmart Foundation to the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Sustainability, known as CARS. Last year’s donation gave birth to the National Strawberry Sustainability Initiative and would fuel 20 research projects in 13 states.

Full Press Release >>



Project Description

The National Sustainable Strawberry Initiative is a new competitive grants program of the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Center for Agriculture and Rural Sustainability (CARS) with funding from the Walmart Foundation to support the expansion of sustainable strawberry production throughout the country.

Walmart Foundation donates $3 million to Division of Agriculture for strawberry sustainability

The purpose of the program is to move sustainable production forward by supporting multidisciplinary projects focused on outreach, education and demonstration of innovative and new technologies that will result in increased production and supply of strawberries.

Successful projects will have:

  • Eligible applicants that are land-grant colleges and universities (1865, 1890, 1994) or state funded public universities and colleges
  • Partnerships with industry such as growers/grower organizations, breeders, distributors, suppliers etc,
  • Focus on dissemination, education and outreach of technology, innovation, and transfer of practices that improve the sustainability of strawberry production, food safety and marketing,
  • Demonstrated and measurable outcomes and impacts,
  • Anticipated awards of $50,000—$200,000 with a 12 month timeline.

Funding Priority Areas

The goal of this Program is to improve sustainability of the US strawberry production system throughout the supply chain, from growers to consumers. To meet this goal, outreach, education, demonstration, and development priority areas may include but are not exclusive to the following:

  • Increase the production season and regional diversity of US strawberry production
  • Reduce the chemical inputs for soil sterilization, fertilization, weed control, and pest management
  • Reduce the energy inputs in production, handling, storage, and transportation
  • Conserve and preserve water resources used in the production system
  • Improve soil quality and health in the production system for succeeding crops
  • Reduce the risk of human health pathogens spread on fresh berries
  • Reduce the postharvest product loss through the supply chain from production through distribution and sales
  • Increase product value and economic return to growers and participants through the supply chain
  • Implement meaningful and constructive metrics for strawberry production sustainability

Center for Agricultural and Rural Sustainability (CARS)
The mission of the CARS is to increase prosperity for rural Arkansas through sustainable practices. The Center provides leadership in Arkansas and the world in balancing the demands of community, agriculture and ecosystems in order to meet the needs of current generations while enhancing the opportunity for future generations to meet their needs.