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News from the Media

'Grass' is here: Fresh asparagus appearing
April 29, 2016

Katie Campbell-Nelson, UMass Extension Vegetable Program and Tom Waskiewicz, UMass Extension 4-H Youth Development Program, comment on this year’s asparagus crop. Campbell-Nelson says during the recent cold weather that farmers were irrigating their asparagus at night to keep it from freezing, but she expects there will be a bountiful supply in the next few weeks. Republican, 4/29/16

Cold Threatens Peach and Apple Crops
April 5, 2016

A winter of extreme warmth and cold, combined with recent roller-coaster conditions, could reduce this year’s apple crop, and will more than likely result in a much smaller peach crop, according to fruit growers looking out this week on snow-covered orchards. UMass tree fruit experts offer observations. Worcester Telegram and Gazette, 4/5/2016, WFCR/NEPR,  4/5/2016

Canadian lynx expanding New England territory, comments by UMass Amherst environmental conservation
March 8, 2016

The deep green eyes of the Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) have the advantage in the region’s dark spruce-fir, or boreal, forest. They see without being seen. Alexej Siren, a biologist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, environmental conservation, comments on sightings in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. (National Geographic, March, 2016)

Mass Net Zero Data Center in Holyoke aims to make Green High Performance Computing Center carbon neutral
March 1, 2016

HOLYOKE — Researchers from the University of Massachusetts Amherst (professor Prashant Shenoy, College of Information and Computer Sciences) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are developing battery technology at the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center that could make the hydropowered city even more carbon neutral. (Data Center Knowledge 2/29/16;  masslive 2/26/16)

UMass Amherst Offers Online Associate of Science in Sustainable Food and Farming
February 16, 2016

AMHERST, Mass. – The Stockbridge School of Agriculture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is now offering a fully online associate of science degree in sustainable food and farming. Starting in September 2016, the 60-credit associate degree will allow students to study sustainable food and farming from anywhere in the world. (News Office 2/11/16)

UMass Researchers Studying Climate Change Impact on Maple Syrup Quality
February 11, 2016

AMHERST, Mass. – As maple sugaring season approaches, plant ecologist Kristina Stinson, assistant professor of environmental conservation at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, recently received a two-year, $149,800 grant to study the impact of climate change on the quantity and quality of sugar maple sap, including its chemical composition, and of sap from red maples, a species less sensitive to climate change. (Red Lake Nation News, 2/11/16;, Recorder, Republican, 2/10/16; News Office release, 2/10/16)

Tick-borne illnesses: Grant provides for discounted testing of ticks from Cape Cod
February 8, 2016

State funding for free tick testing ran out in June, but now Cape Cod Healthcare is helping scientists continue efforts to track infected deer ticks on the Cape by underwriting the cost of tick testing at UMass through a grant to the Cape Cod Cooperative Extension program.

The $20,000 donation from the 2016 Community Benefits Annual Strategic Grants program will help reduce the cost of the tests from $50 per tick to $15 per tick, said UMass microbiologist Stephen Rich. It runs through September. (Cape Cod Times 02/08/16)

Cranberry farmers adjusting to warm weather, UMass Cranberry Station Director notes
February 1, 2016

Carolyn J. Demoranville, director of the Cranberry Experiment Station in Wareham, talks about how cranberry farmers are adjusting to the warm winter this year. She says growers traditionally flood their bogs in winter to protect the plants from damage. (Wicked Local Kingston, 2/1/16)

UMass Amherst Food Scientist Studies Reducing Saturated Fats in Popular Foods
January 19, 2016

AMHERST, Mass. – University of Massachusetts Amherst food scientist Eric Decker has received a three-year, $469,775 grant to explore ways to improve the nutrition of foods high in saturated fats. Results should help food producers address recent new dietary guidelines recommending that Americans eat fewer of those fats to reduce heart disease risk. (1/13/16 UMass News Office)

Barnstable County's longest-serving employee retired
January 3, 2016

Barnstable County’s longest serving employee retired January 1 after nearly four decades on the job.

William “Bill” Clark, 65, executive director of the Cape Cod Cooperative Extension, has spent virtually his entire career — 38 years — working with the education and research arm of the county. He  passed the torch of leadership to his deputy director, Michael Maguire. (12/24/15 Cape Cod Times)