Our ‘New Innovator in Food and Agriculture’

The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research has selected Amélie Gaudin, assistant professor of agroecology, as one of the nine inaugural recipients of the New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Award. They will receive a total of $4.8 million in research support over five years.

Established by the U.S. Farm Bill of 2014, the nonprofit Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research is charged with complementing and furthering the work of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The New Innovator award supports new faculty and their teams of students and scholars to conduct research with the potential to expand food availability and encourage sustainable agriculture practices.

Amelie Gaudin, UC Davis. (photo: Robin DeRieux/UC Davis)
Amelie Gaudin, UC Davis. (photo: Robin DeRieux/UC Davis)

The foundation gave awards in five of its priority research areas: plant efficiency; sustainable farm animal productivity, resilience and health; water use; nutrition and healthy food choices; and soil health, which is Gaudin’s expertise.

“This award will allow us to tackle critical gaps in understanding how to optimize root traits to better exploit improvements in soil health in rain-fed and irrigated cropping systems,” she said.

“By testing how breeding has impacted corn and tomato root and rhizosphere processes critical to cycle and uptake resources, we hope to shed light on how breeders and producers can grow more productive and resilient crops using sustainable practices at a large scale.”

Gaudin studied agronomy and crop physiology at several global research centers before joining the UC Davis faculty in the Department of Plant Sciences in 2015.

Sally Rockey, executive director, said: “Awarding our first research grants is a landmark occasion for the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research and it is a particular honor to invest in the bold ideas of nine scientists who show such extraordinary promise so early in their careers.”

About the authors

Dateline Staff Dave Jones, editor, can be reached at 530-752-6556 or dljones@ucdavis.edu.  Content provider Cody Kitaura can be reached at 530-752-1932 or kitaura@ucdavis.edu.

Communications in Plant Sciences

Ann Filmer can be reached at 530-754-6788 or afilmer@ucdavis.edu

November 22, 2106, UC Davis Dateline

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