Helena, Mont. – The Montana Potato Research and Market Development Program is seeking proposals to advance opportunities and address the needs of the state potato industry. Grant funds total $70,000 this funding cycle. Proposals need to be submitted by 5:00 p.m. on October 20, 2015 through fundingmt.org.
Montana is a major producer of potatoes and seed potatoes. In 2014, Montana produced 3,616,000 cwt of potatoes with 276,000 cwt used for seed. The total value of potato production topped $46 million.
This year late blight, the same disease responsible for the potato famine, was discovered for the first time in Gallatin County. Producers are hopeful the warm, dry weather and targeted application of fungicides will minimize its impact. The Montana Potato Advisory Committee has identified stem and tuber diseases caused by fungi and bacteria research as priorities for the 2015-16 funding cycle. In addition, the committee seeks research projects focused on the management of potato viruses and their vectors, such as weeds.
The committee will review all applications and make recommendations to the department for funding. Projects must be innovative and not duplicate relevant research already available to Montana potato producers. If relevant research is available, the applicant must explain how the proposed research will build upon the previous research.
Visit http://bit.ly/potatoRFP2015 for a complete list of guidelines and eligibility requirements. Questions on applications should be directed to the Montana Potato Research & Market Development Program, PO Box 200201, Helena, MT 59620-0201 or by contacting Jana Mertens at (406) 444-2402 or via email at JMertens@mt.gov.
The Montana Department of Agriculture’s mission is to protect producers and consumers, and to enhance and develop agriculture and allied industries. For more information on the Montana Department of Agriculture, visit agr.mt.gov.