A Message from Dean Akridge
Agricultural Research Impacts Food Production from Farm to Plate
Dean Jay Akridge
It's been nearly a century since 360 acres donated to Purdue in 1914 became the foundation for the first agricultural "experiment station" off campus. This farm laid the groundwork for the eight regional Purdue Agricultural Centers now located around the state. The farms entrusted to us provide an important resource that will continue to benefit Indiana agriculture well into the future.
Today, faculty and staff conduct more than 400 research projects on 40-plus different crops and animal species at PACs each year. Field research targets local production problems, providing solutions to area farmers.
Research conducted in Purdue labs also advances the food and agriculture industry. A horticulture scientist adapted NASA experiments with LED lighting to the greenhouse industry. He collaborates with other researchers to determine if using LEDs can lower production costs and provide a means to grow fresh vegetables during the off-season.
After harvest, food scientists are testing new methods to eliminate harmful bacteria such as E. coli from fresh produce. A promising new technology uses cold plasma to destroy pathogens in packaged food products.
Advances in agricultural research at Purdue are essential to overcome production obstacles both at home and abroad and to help ensure a plentiful and safe food supply for a growing population.
Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture