January 29, 2023
Chicago 12, Melborne City, USA

NDSU’s Barney Geddes receives award from the Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research – Agweek


FARGO, ND – Bernie Gades recently received the New Innovator Award in Food and Agriculture Research from the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research.

Gades is an assistant professor of microbiological science at North Dakota State University. His research focuses on nitrogen-producing bacteria that may be beneficial to the yield of cereal crops. Gades hopes his research will be able to help farmers reduce their input costs in the future.

“It simply came to our notice then. I also grew up on a small family farm, and I can see fertilizer becoming the main input into most farmers’ farming systems. So it is becoming more and more expensive. The war in Ukraine has made it even more expensive for fertilizer. So they’re more than double what they were last year, “said Gades.

Gades says in the near future he hopes that these natural nitrogen-producing germs will enable farmers to supplement expensive fertilizers to ensure quality yields from their crops.

“This grant is really focused on the long term. Can we really crop up these kinds of relationships that can’t take advantage of them? So things like wheat or corn need a lot of fertilizer, ”he said. “Can we use these germs to supplement that fertilizer?”

Colin Fitzgerald, NDSU Vice President of Research and Creative Activities, is thrilled to win the New Innovator Award and believes that it demonstrates the great commitment that his work holds.

“This FFAAR award is a testament to Barney’s innovative and creative approach to tackling one of the major challenges of the 21st century in agricultural, sustainable and resilient food production,” he said.

On its website, FFAR describes its objective “to connect funds, researchers and farmers through public-private partnerships that support bold research to address the biggest food and agricultural challenges.” The FFAR says the new innovator in its Food and Agriculture Research Award “provides funding for early career scientists to conduct bold food and agricultural research.”

Geddes is one of eight people across the country to have received this award and grant. The grant means funding for large visionary style research projects, such as Gades’s Microbial Research. Gades was surprised and honored to receive this award and grant early in his career, noting that usually selected researchers have many more years of research and experience under their belt.

“It’s usually really hard to secure as an early professor. So these kinds of awards usually go to very established researchers. So it’s a huge deal for us because it allows us to do this very far-sighted research, even at this early stage of my career,” Gades said.

The Gades study has the help of seven undergraduates and three undergraduate students, as well as a post-doctoral assistant. He says they all play important roles in his research.


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