OLD SERA005: Sweet Potato Collaborators Conference (IEG-14)
- October 01, 2009 to September 30, 2010
- Administrative Advisor(s):
Joe Zublena (NC.) - Extension
- NIFA Reps:
Statement of Issue(s) and Justification:SERA-IEG5
Title: National Sweetpotato Collaborators Group
This group has met annually since 1939 to exchange information about all aspects of sweetpotato production and post-harvest research and extension. The earlier meetings were primarily research-based, but in recent years, many extension specialists, graduate students, and crop consultants have participated.
The Collaborators Group annually coordinates regional trials of promising sweetpotato varieties being developed by participating geneticists, reviews the results of those regional trials, and agrees on germplasm lines to be entered and evaluated the following year. Sub-groups (ie weed science, etc) within the Collaborators Group also conduct collaborative studies each year.
Statement of Issues and Justification:
Sweetpotatoes are the major horticultural crop in several southern states and they face the usual challenges of production (varieties, best management practices, crop protection, pest management, mechanization, economics) and post-harvest (new products, marketing, value-added). There is no other forum, regionally or nationally, that focuses exclusively on sweetpotato research and extension activities. The expected benefits and impacts are continuing scientific synergy and rapid dissemination of information about emerging technologies. Stakeholders (customers) are the sweetpotato producers and shippers as well as the consumers that they serve and they recognized the importance of this collaboration and committee that has provided them research based information in which their industry has been built, and they continually depend on.
The Collaborators Group objective is the open sharing of research based information among a diverse community of sweetpotato scientists, extension specialists, and industry representatives addressing plant breeding, molecular biology, cultural practices, food science, pathology, entomology, physiology, and marketing. Annual publications include the results of the uniform regional germplasm trials and abstracts associated with presentations at the annual meeting.
The objective is met through the annual meeting of the Collaborators Group (usually in conjunction with the Southern Region ASHS and SAAS meetings). The website is maintained by Arthur Villordon at Louisiana State University. Various sub-groups of the Collaborators have successfully united to seek funding for various aspects of the sweetpotato industry including support for germplasm collection trips and regional sweetpotato IPM activities. A $2 million grant in sweetpotato production was awarded among several southeastern Universities and was recently concluded; however, ongoing collaboration efforts and applications to the USDA for federal funding have continued. In addition, a $2.8 million grant from USDA was recently funded that included LSU, Mississippi State University and NC State University, with extension of results to occur through the Sweetpotato Collaborators.
Internal and External Linkages:
As stated above, the Collaborators Group is diverse and extends beyond the traditional research and extension faculty at land grant and non-land grant universities in states that produce sweetpotatoes. The private sector, international participants, graduate students, and other interested parties participate. Annual meetings usually range from 40 to 60 attendees and include states outside the southern region as well as several 1890 universities.
Proceedings are available to all participants and extension specialists who participate can immediately disseminate new information and research findings to their stakeholders. In addition, abstracts of the annual presentations, and multi-state yield trials are published in their annual report.
Offices consist of a chair (currently Dr. Mike Jackson, USDA, Charleston, SC), a chair-elect (currently Dr. Tara Smith, Louisiana State University), and a secretary-treasurer (currently Mr. Ken Pecota, NC State University). The Administrative advisor is Dr. David Monks (NC Agricultural Research Service, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, NC State University) and Joe Zublena (NC Cooperative Extension Service, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, NC State University).
Origin of Request:
This continuation is being requested by the administrative advisors named above.
Procedures and Activities
Expected Outcomes and Impacts:
Project Participation:Include a completed Appendix E form
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