Rep. Jim Costa announced $15.5 million in Farm Bill funding to help Valley farmers and growers fight the spread of pests and plant diseases. This funding will go to 20 projects aimed at preventing and eradicating invasive species, including huanglongbing.
"A strong summer harvest is critical to our Valley farmers and growers," said Costa. "Funding from APHIS helps arm our farmers and growers with the tools necessary to fight pests and diseases that threaten their crops. During the last Farm Bill, I pushed for the inclusion of funding for pest and disease prevention and will continue to work to make sure it is included in this year's reauthorization."
Over the last three years, over 600 APHIS plant, pest, and disease management and disaster prevention projects have helped to protect American agriculture and educate the public about the threat of invasive species. Examples include:
developing eLearning modules for pest screening and increasing diagnostic capacity;
training canine teams to conduct domestic surveillance activities;
supporting the 2011 national survey of honey bee pests and diseases; and
developing the Hungry Pests campaign--a targeted, nationwide invasive pest public awareness campaign.