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USDA National Institute for Food and Agriculture director to visit campus May 6

Sonny Ramaswamy

PHOTO:
Lexington, Ky.

Sonny Ramaswamy, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture will visit the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment May 6. He will give a seminar titled “Perfect Storm to Nutritional Security,” from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. EDT in the Cameron Williams Hall, in Plant Sciences Building.

During the seminar Ramaswamy will discuss what is needed to ensure nutritional security and better health outcomes as the earth's population continues to grow while under the context of changing climate, diminishing land and water resources, environmental degradation, changing incomes and diets, and minimal ecological footprint.

Much of the focus of Ramaswamy’s seminar is on transformative approaches needed including gene editing and other biotechnology methods, genomics to phenomics—phenomes are physical and biochemical traits, nanotechnology, pest management, robotics, use of smart systems, the “internet of agricultural things” and big data analytics.

President Barack Obama appointed Ramaswamy in 2012 to serve as director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture.NIFA addresses many challenges facing the nation through exemplary agricultural science. It works with scientists to find innovative solutions to issues related to agriculture, food, the environment and communities.

Prior to his tenure at NIFA, Ramaswamy held a number of academic positions, most recently as dean of Oregon State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences. He is an award-winning scientist, educator and administrator. He has received numerous grants for research in integrative reproductive biology of insects. He received his bachelor’s degree in agriculture and master’s degree in entomology from the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, India. He earned a doctorate in entomology from Rutgers University. He is also a graduate of Harvard University’s Management Development Program.

Ramaswamy will take questions following the seminar. Contact Cecilia Virtue at 859-257-3333 or Cecilia.virtue@uky.edu for special accommodations.

Contact: 

Lesley Oliver, 859-257-1084

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