Source: USDA

More than $7 million in grants for research on the biology of plant processes and traits has been granted by the USDA, according to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

The new traits could be used to breed crops with enhanced value and resilience to climate stress. The research will increase understanding of plant biology from the genome to the field, and provide a foundation for the development of plant varieties with increased yield, reduced production cost and enhanced quality and nutritional value.

"At a time when disruptive climate change threatens production of some of the world's staple foods, some of the biggest gains we can make in ending world hunger will involve development of stress-resistant crops," said Vilsack. "Drought-tolerant, heat-tolerant and saline-resistant crops will not only offer tremendous improvements for farmers around the world, but also position American farmers competitively in the world market."

Read the original news release.