The Peanut Innovation Lab bookended the annual Georgia Peanut Tour, the third week in September, with two more days of activities this year, giving two international groups an even deeper dive into peanut production in the state.
Researchers in North Carolina have updated a risk assessment tool that empowers peanut farmers there to decide when a pest, weed or weather condition threatens yield enough to invest in fighting it. Along with updating the Peanut Risk Tool to be more usable in North Carolina, the work will make the resource available to extension specialists in other countries, as well, giving them the same ability to forecast risk and reward in the field.
Peanut researchers from the University of Georgia met with hundreds of peanut scientists from around the world earlier this week to discuss the international impact of peanut research and to recognize top researchers.
Scientists, students and advisors working on Peanut Innovation Lab projects in Uganda met in late May for a launch meeting in Kampala to celebrate the start of work and share questions and insight about the direction of projects.
The Peanut Innovation Lab is working not only to find the diversity in modern peanut, but also to introduce new diversity from the wild species. These efforts are aimed at helping to improve future peanut varieties – which already adapts well to different climates – become even more resilient to disease, pests and extreme weather.
One big key to improving peanut crop quality and market reliability in Malawi is post-harvest equipment. The Peanut Innovation Lab helped match up the people who want to buy peanuts with Frank Nolin, a retired steel equipment manufacturer who spent his career building equipment for the US peanut industry. By making it possible for buyers to sort nuts for size and quality, Nolin’s equipment allows buyers to separate nuts by grade and reward farmers based on quality, as well as separate groundnuts for sale in different markets.
A dual degree master’s program that evolved from a partnership between the University of Georgia and the University of Padova in Padua, Italy, has also led to collaborative research between the two institutions.
American and international students continue to be attracted to the dual master’s degree program in sustainable agriculture offered through a partnership between the University of Georgia Department of Crop and Soil Sciences (CRSS) and the University of Padova (UNIPD) Department of Agronomy, Food, Natural Resources, Animals and Environment (DAFNAE) in Italy.