Research to enhance
WRRC RFP for 2015
Message from Henry Bierlink, WRRC Executive Director
There will be a change in the way that the Washington Blueberry Commission (WBC) and the Washington Red Raspberry Commission (WRRC) will be administering their research processes.
While the Commissions will be more or less following their historical research granting processes, we are adding a new feature to our research granting process. This new step is being done at the request of some berry researchers and to promote communications between the Washington berry industry and researchers.
On October 21-22 there will be a Research Review at WSU Mt Vernon. Researchers with WRRC and/or WBC grants are expected to make a report on their 2014 research at this meeting.
Researchers wishing to source funds from either Commission in 2015 will provide a short presentation on their research concept for the following year. Research Committee members and other industry members will interact with researchers at this meeting.
Following the meeting, the WRRC and the WBC will provide additional guidance to the researchers on their pending proposals. It would be highly desirable for all 2014 funded researchers and 2015 prospective researchers to attend and participate in this meeting. Due to the late notice we will make accommodations in schedule as best we can. Video conferencing is available as well.
National Roadmap for Red Raspberry Research, Teaching and Outreach Activities
According to Catherine Daniels, WSU Extension Specialist, a two-year effort has resulted in the National Roadmap for Red Raspberry Research, Teaching and Outreach Activities document. This is the last of the outputs promised when USDA-SCRI funded a planning grant. The other two outputs were the open meetings during 2012 in Sandusky and Seattle. Information from the open meetings was included with industry documents and used to sketch out this roadmap. She notes that her hope is that it will be a useful starting point, and, that as a group, youíll want to update it over time as more common opportunities and challenges are identified. It is also her hope that one or more of you will host this document (and future updates) on your website(s). The SCRI Raspberry Group is continuing to prepare a full research grant proposal so as to be ready for a USDA call-for-proposals. They feel strongly that thry can successfully tackle some of the research needs indentified and contribute to industry growth. If you have questions, please let Catherine know.
Creating practical, economic, and environmental progress for the red raspberry industry through research
In Spring and Summer, red raspberry growers are concentrated on growing a quality crop, getting it harvested and maximizing their income. Fall and Winter are for vacationing, planning, going to meetings and workshops to meet with other growers, learn about the results of the previous seasonís research or new ways to grow a better crop. Perhaps there is new machinery on the market that offer new ways to harvest or spay that could be used on their farm. Maybe there is new information about a pest insect or disease that will reduce a spray treatment or focus it for the most impact. There might be a new cultivar that shows promise. All those possibilities come from some sort of research or R&D done by someone.
Every year the Washington Red Raspberry Commission decides on the areas of research that the Board feels are most significant. Then the Commission requests proposals from those who do research through the publication of a RFP (request for proposal). Though most research has traditionally been done by Land Grant University scientists, anyone can offer a proposal for consideration.
After the annual meeting held in December, the Commission decides on the amount of funds it can spend to support research. The Commission receives the proposals and the Board chooses those they feel will benefit the industry the most. Board members are volunteers and itís to their credit that they take the time and energy to sift through the proposals and make a decision for the good of all Washington red raspberry growers.