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New Foundation Will Facilitate U.S. Department Of Agriculture And Private Sector Research, Development, And Technology Partnerships

Nine economic development organizations from across the country comprise the Agricultural Technology Innovation Partnership Foundation

ARLINGTON, Texas, April 4, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nine technology-based economic development organizations from across the United States have joined forces to form the Agricultural Technology Innovation Partnership (ATIP) Foundation, which will facilitate public-private research and technology licensing partnerships, and promote commercialization of U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) research outcomes from the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), and its other scientific agencies . 

The ATIP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity with offices in Arlington, Texas and member offices in eight states.  It is governed by members comprised of  its founding economic development organizations: the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO); Innovate Mississippi; the Wisconsin Security Research Consortium; the Georgia Research Alliance; Pennsylvania's Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority; the California Association for Local Economic Development; the Kansas Bioscience Authority; the Center for Innovation at Arlington, Texas; and the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) in Toledo, Ohio.  Each member of the Foundation also has a separate partnership intermediary agreement with ARS.

The ATIP Foundation will receive USDA requests to develop public-private consortia around specific initiatives of high national priority.  The first of these focuses on land management practices to sustain soil health for producing food, feed, fiber and biofuels.  A second initiative is in food and public health that addresses issues in translating nutrition research results to the food supply to combat obesity.  The Foundation will assist in the formation of collaborative partnerships enabling the integration of venture capital with government, industry and academic R&D. Similarly, the ATIP Foundation will approach the USDA with private sector research needs to seek the expertise of the USDA's science and technology agencies.

"We expect our partnership with USDA will produce results that the agricultural community will use to solve some of the most difficult problems facing our country today," said Wes Jurey, ATIP Foundation organizing member in Texas. "Private capital combined with the expertise of public researchers and the Foundation's tech-based business know-how will achieve efficiencies in R&D that were not previously possible."

In January 2013, the ATIP Foundation's members appointed Richard Brenner, Ph.D., as Director.  Brenner's role is to coordinate activities of the member organizations in planning regional events to deliver solutions to the agricultural sector, and to develop outreach strategies to facilitate partnerships with the private sector. 

"With the world population expected to exceed nine billion by 2050, increased demand for food and water will challenge our agricultural R&D infrastructure at a time when federal resources are diminishing," said Brenner.  "This Foundation represents a new model for enhancing economic sustainability and U.S. competitiveness through public-private partnerships capitalizing on federal scientific research."

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