Barley Pest Initiative annual report released highlighting three years of progress
  • 02/07/2024

Barley Pest Initiative annual report released highlighting three years of progress

The Barley Pest Initiative (BPI) strengthens the capacity of the national public sector barley research infrastructure to address 20 major insect, viral, bacterial, and fungal threats to the production of high-quality barley. Scientists receiving funding through the Initiative are working to develop management and genetic resistance strategies to mitigate or eliminate the substantial negative economic impact of major barley pests.  Barley pests cause 5 to 15% yield reductions annually, resulting in losses of $36 to $118 million a year nationwide to growers.

An annual report was recently published to highlight the success of the first three years of the BPI, which at the time was receiving $3 million in appropriated funds annually. These funds are allocated each year to support researchers at USDA Agricultural Research Service stations and land grant universities across fifteen states. In conjunction with the release of the annual report, a virtual research forum was held on February 7th which brought 40+ barley researchers and stakeholders together to celebrate the success and to plan for future work under the BPI. 

In FY24, an additional $1 million is included in the proposed House and Senate budgets. The National Barley Improvement Committee will be heading to D.C. in early-March to seek an additional $1.3 million to fully fund the initiative. 

The collaborative research venture plans to release a summary report annually, and will use the virtual forum platform each year to facilitate communication across the diverse partnership. 

Read the 2022 Barley Pest Initiative Annual Report here.