If you had $192.5 billion, wouldn’t you spend $4.4 million to protect it?
The National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN) is a 50-state network of plant diagnostic laboratories (led by centers at UC Davis, Cornell, U Florida, Kansas State U, and Michigan State U) charged with detecting high consequence pests and pathogens that have been introduced into the Nation’s agricultural and natural ecosystems, identifying them, and immediately reporting them to appropriate responders and decision makers. To accomplish this mission, the NPDN has invested in plant diagnostic laboratory infrastructure and training, developed an extensive network of first detectors through education and outreach, and enhanced communication among agencies and stakeholders responsible for responding to and mitigating new outbreaks.
The critical infrastructure and programs provided by NPDN are not available elsewhere. NPDN laboratories help protect our nation’s crops, forests, rangelands and ornamentals and their associated industries through careful analysis of hundreds of thousands of samples every year to detect threats that would have significant negative economic impact on agriculture, threaten the safety of our food supply, harm public health, and jeopardize trade.
The NPDN is funded as part of the Food and Agricultural Defense Initiative (FADI), a programmatic line item under National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Integrated Activities. The NPDN shares FADI funding with the National Animal Health Laboratory Network (NAHLN) and the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN). The President’s 2012 Budget requested continuation of the historical funding level for FADI – $9.83 million. However, NO programmatic funding for FADI was included in the House version of the FY 2012 appropriations bill…NONE…ZERO.
The NPDN operates on a $4.4 million annual budget. The value of crops in the United States was $192.5 billion last year. You do the math.