Issue: 1210

CALS Online and Dean’s Message
July 11, 2022

Dean’s Message

Hello CALS – Last week I had the special opportunity to visit the Stine Seed Farms Pyrolysis Project in Redfield, with a team of people from Iowa State and others from across the agriculture and energy interests of Iowa. The visit was hosted by Harry Stine and Robert Brown (ISU College of Engineering), co-director of the ISU Bioeconomy Institute and lead recipient of an XPRIZE Carbon Removal milestone award. The gathering also included a visit by Senator Grassley. The project is all about taking biomass and turning it into biochar and oils as part of a new carbon economy… More

Top Stories

New Study Gauges Public Acceptance of Gene-edited Foods
Researchers at Iowa State, including David Peters and Christopher Cummings, sociology and criminal justice, surveyed a nationally representative sample of 2,000 U.S. residents to gauge public acceptance of gene-edited foods. Social factors like food beliefs and trust in institutions played a big role in the participants’ willingness to eat or actively avoid products made with gene-editing technologies. Peters and Cummings authored a report on the study for the June 1 issue of Frontiers in Food Science and Technology. They are part of the Gene Edited Foods team that includes Carmen Bain and Sonja Lindberg, sociology and criminal justice; Michael Dahlstrom, Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication; and Clark Wolf, philosophy and religious studies. More  


Egg Industry Center Releases Report on EPA Draft Emissions
The Egg Industry Center at Iowa State has released a new report to help the U.S. egg industry understand the science behind the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed emission models. “It is gratifying to know that EPA is soliciting additional scientific input and is willing to listen to our concerns as they seek scientifically robust solutions,” said Richard S. Gates, director of the Egg Industry Center. More  

Teaching and Students

Alum Goes from Farming in Video Games to Real Life
Grant Hilbert (’20 agricultural business and economics) made enough money from YouTube videos of him playing the Farming Simulator video game to help him buy 250 acres in Poweshiek and Mahaska counties. He filmed, edited and posted a video nearly every day he was enrolled in classes at Iowa State. During his junior and senior years, Hilbert started looking for Iowa farmland. More  

Extension and Outreach

New Report Examines Farmer Perspectives on 4R Plus Nutrient Loss Reduction
A recent report from the Iowa Farm and Rural Life Poll indicates that a major nutrient management effort called the 4R Plus initiative is having a positive impact. 4R Plus, a science-based framework designed to guide improved nutrient management among farmers, is promoted by a coalition of more than 50 public and private agricultural stakeholders and non-governmental conservation organizations. J. Arbuckle, extension sociologist and director of the annual survey of Iowa farmers, said the survey showed about two-thirds of respondents were aware of the 4R Plus program, and more importantly, many farmers reported using one or more of the main practices 4R Plus promotes. More  

Extension Receives Gift for Statewide Community Garden Project
Growing Together Iowa, a donation gardening and nutrition education project from ISU Extension and Outreach, has received a $20,000 gift from Amerigroup to support a statewide community garden initiative that will provide approximately 90,000 pounds of fresh produce to area food pantries. More  

Around the College

Rademacher Selected for IPIC Interim Director
Chris Rademacher, clinical professor in veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine and swine extension veterinarian at Iowa State, has been named interim director of the university’s Iowa Pork Industry Center. Dr. Rademacher has been serving as the associate director of the center since 2018. He will begin his interim role Aug. 1, as Jason Ross prepares to begin his new role as chair of animal science. More  

Iowa State Teaching Farms Receive Award
The Iowa Association of Agricultural Educators recognized Iowa State’s teaching farms with the Outstanding Cooperation Award at its annual conference on June 28 in Ankeny. The award demonstrates IAAE’s appreciation for those in the college who support agricultural education by helping with the many FFA career development contests, including livestock, meats, crops, soils, food science, agricultural mechanics and more, as well as tours at the state FFA conference. More  

Seed Science Center Helps Growers Obtain and Plant Quality Seed
The Seed Science Center at Iowa State has provided objective, research-based information for the United States and countries around the world for more than 100 years. With 194 affiliates, including graduate students, the center tests more than 45,000 seed samples annually, from 300 species, and has helped improve seed access and distribution in more than 79 countries. “Seed is the foundation of agriculture,” said Manjit Misra, director of the Seed Science Center. “To have good agriculture we must have good seeds.” More  

College Alumni BBQ Sept. 3 – Call for Volunteers and Invitation to Attend
Faculty and staff volunteers are needed for the annual CALS barbecue, to be held Sept. 3 at the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. Approximately 500 CALS alumni and friends are expected to attend this year’s event, which will run from 9 a.m. to noon, prior to the ISU vs. SEMO football game (kick-off is 1 p.m.). Complimentary breakfast, parking and shuttle to the stadium will be provided. Volunteers who register will receive a CALS barbecue t-shirt in thanks for their service. Register to volunteer online by August 5. For questions, contact Angie Weeks ( Volunteer opportunities include:

  • Registration/Greeting (8:30 to 10:15 a.m., 10:15 a.m. to noon)
  • Beverage service (8:30 to 10:15 a.m., 10:15 a.m. to noon)
  • Tear down (noon to 1 p.m.)

CALS faculty, staff and guests are also invited to attend the barbecue as guests. Details are available on the CALS barbecue webpage. Registration required by Aug. 23. 


July 27: Wine and Grape Field Day
The 2022 Wine and Grape Field Day will be July 27 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Hosted by the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, the morning session will be at the vineyard at the Horticulture Research Station and the afternoon session will be in the Food Sciences Building. The event is free but registration is required. Admission will be capped at 20 participants. More  

Aug. 8-11: National Plant Breeders Association
Regular registration rates are available through Friday, July 15, for the 2022 annual meeting of the National Plant Breeders Association. The conference, scheduled for Aug. 8-11 in Ames, is hosted by the Department of Agronomy in partnership with the Midwest USDA Agricultural Research Service. The organizing committee is co-chaired by Thomas Lübberstedt, agronomy. More   

Communications Kiosk

Learn Best Practices for Writing for The Conversation
The Conversation is hosting a panel of news and media relations professionals on Wednesday, July 13, from noon to 1 p.m. via Zoom. The panel will cover best practices for identifying and preparing faculty to write with The Conversation, working with communicators across campus and more. More  


Science on the Hill Event Focuses on Climate-Smart Agriculture
Climate-smart agriculture is the focus of the National Academies annual Science on the Hill event, scheduled for Friday, July 15, from 11 a.m. to noon. Policy leaders and scientists will provide a panel discussion on the best available scientific evidence about approaches for reducing climate change through climate-smart agriculture. Included on the panel is Mitchell Hora (’17 agronomy, agricultural systems technologies), founder and CEO of Continuum Ag. The event will be webcast. More  


The Search for Iowa’s Beavers
When Mitch Harting applied for a water resources summer internship through Water Rocks!, he knew he would have the opportunity to travel the state, meet new people and share his passion for Iowa’s natural resources. What the senior in agricultural studies didn’t know is that he would get a chance to search for beavers. In a July 7 blog post for Iowa Learning Farms, Harting explains how looking for beavers and their dams is important to water quality research. More  

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online

Julie Stewart, Editor, (515) 294-5616 

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is published by email every Monday. The deadline for submitting content is 12 p.m. on Thursday. 


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