The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released its annual Technology Transfer Report (pdf), which highlights agricultural innovations from scientists and researchers that are solving problems for America’s farmers, ranchers, foresters, and consumers; and creating opportunities for American businesses. The USDA’s total number of income-bearing licenses in Fiscal Year 2019 was 510; active Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADAs) was 278; CRADAs entered by USDA was 95; and the number of new patent applications filed was 97.

“The outcomes and impacts in this comprehensive report represent a tremendous amount of scientific excellence and creativity in finding solutions to complex problems,” said Scott Hutchins, deputy under secretary who leads USDA’s Research, Education, and Economics mission area, in an agency press release. “The value-added innovations highlighted in this report are an example of the strides USDA is making to bring forth the vision set by the USDA Science Blueprint and USDA’s Agriculture Innovation Agenda that Secretary [Sonny] Perdue announced earlier this year.”

Some of the highlights of the report are as follows:

  • New freezing technology that retains fresh-like fruit quality when thawed. The method uses 70% less energy compared with conventional freezing methods and shows promise to transform the $54 billion U.S. frozen foods market.
  • Development of USDA Red, the world’s first red-leaf spinach that has 53% higher antioxidant capacity.

New technology to mass produce and release parasitoids for controlling Asian citrus psyllid, a pest of citrus-growing areas in the United States and vector of a bacterium that causes citrus greening disease or Huanglongbing.

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