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Grain Science and Industry

Grain Science and Industry
Kansas State University
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Food & Feed Grain Institute

Kansas State University Food and Feed Grain(s) Institute –A brief History and a Guide to accessing its records

Kansas State University established the Food and Feed Grain Institute (FFGI) in 1966 by authorization from the Kansas Board of Regents. Its original purpose was “to expand services to American agriculture, the processing industries, and to involve the University more fully in growing international food programs.” Dr. William J. Hoover became Department Head in 1966 and served as the first FFGI Director from 1966-76. The second FFGI Director was Dr. Charles Deyoe from 1976-1993. He became Department Head in 1976. Roe Bosdorff served as FFGI Coordinator from 1986-1993 under Dr. Deyoe who stepped down from department head and returned to the faculty in 1992.

As a result of establishing the FFGI, Kansas State University undoubtedly expanded its services to American agriculture and the food and feed grain processing industries. However, FFGI’s biggest impact was involving the Department of Grain Science and Industry, College of Agriculture and Kansas State University more fully in international food supply efforts, and international knowledge and technology transfer efforts involving the drying, storage, handling, transportation, processing, utilization and consumption of grain-based food and feed products. A tremendous number of projects were undertaken, many technical reports were published, individuals from all over the world were trained at KSU and in their respective countries, many international graduate students pursued graduate degrees at KSU and returned to their home countries to become food system leaders in academia, industry and government. Hard copies of all publications including technical and annual reports are in a Food and Feed Grains Institute special collection located in KSU’s Hale Library (http://www.lib.k-state.edu/depts/spec/findaids/). Electronic versions of publications originally submitted as hard copies to USAID have recently become available on-line as scanned PDF files.

The most comprehensive and accurate locating of records occurs when using the term “Kansas State University. Food and Feed Grains Institute” via the "Look up" function in the “Authoring Organization(s)” box of the “Advanced Search: Documents” page accessible via the "Search Documents" function on the homepage of USAID’s Development Experience Clearinghouse (DCE): http://dec.usaid.gov/index.cfm This should bring up 139 PDF documents.

The first project was funded in 1967 and was entitled Technical Assistance in Food Grain Drying, Storage, Handling and Transportation. It lasted from 1967-1973. The agreement was described as:

On July 1, 1967, an agreement was entered into between Kansas State University and the Agency for International Development under which Kansas State University agreed to provide technical assistance to the Agency for International Development and its missions in developing countries in the solution of problems involving the drying, storage, handling and transportation of grain or grain products. The Food and Feed Grain Institute was charged with carrying out the University's responsibilities under the contract as requested and authorized by A.I.D.

The first annual report was submitted as the 1968 annual report which is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNRAB411.pdf

Additional annual reports for 1969 through 1971 can be retrieved from the on-line database. A final annual or summary report documenting the end of the first project in 1973 and the start of the second project in 1974 does not appear to be available on-line.

The second project was entitled Technical Assistance in Grain Storage, Processing, and Marketing and Agri-business Development and lasted from 1974-1980. The agreement was described as:

In September 1974, Kansas State University and the Agency for International Development agreed to a new Contract, AID/ta-C-1162 entitled, "Technical Assistance in Grain Storage, Processing, and Marketing and Agribusiness Development."

The first annual report for the second project available from the on-line database is from 1976: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNAAE458.pdf

Additional annual reports for 1978-79 and 1979-80 can be retrieved from the on-line database. A final annual or summary report documenting the end of the second project in 1980 does not appear to exist on-line. The 1980 annual report gives no indication that the project was coming to an end. It is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNAAT872.pdf

The third project was entitled Improvement of Postharvest Grain Systems and lasted from 1980-86. It was assigned USAID project number 9310786 and apparently became the umbrella project title and number for the previous projects as it is shown to have lasted from FY1967 through FY1984. The agreement was described as:

In October 1980, Kansas State University and the Agency for International Development developed a Cooperative Agreement, AID/DSAN-CA-0256 entitled, "Improvement of Postharvest Grain Systems." The major portion of FY 1981 activities were conducted under this agreement.

The project abstract was:

Project, to be implemented by Kansas State University, to help LDC institutions to plan, design, and implement programs and projects to improve postharvest handling, storage, marketing, processing, and distribution of grain and grain products at the small farmer level. Short-term TDY assistance, including in-country training, will be provided to Missions. A Postharvest Documentation Service will be established to provide, free of charge, requestors in developing countries with paper or microfiche copies of technical reports related to the postharvest storage, drying, processing, packaging, and marketing of grains and dry legumes. The documentation service will also provide computer searches of an extensive database.

The 1981 annual report documents the transition from the 1974-1980 project to the 1980-1986 project and is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNAAN991.pdf

Additional annual reports for 1981-82 and 1982-83 can be retrieved from the on-line database. A final report of the 1980-1986 project is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PDAAT594.pdf

The fourth project was entitled Postharvest Grains Systems R&D and lasted from 1986-93. It was assigned USAID project number 9364144 and is shown to have lasted from FY1985 through FY1993. It appears that beginning with this project the name of the Institute was also changed by adding a plural “s” to “Grain” as the official reports used “Food and Feed Grains Institute” on the cover page.

The project abstract was:

Project to reduce postharvest grain losses in developing countries by enhancing the capacity of international and Third World agricultural researchers to improve the drying, conditioning, handling, storage, and processing of cereal and legume grains. Implemented by the Food and Feed Grain Institute (FFGI) of Kansas State University (KSU), the project will focus on research, technology transfer, training, and networking. Under actual or simulated developing country conditions, FFGI will conduct adaptive and applied research on technologies which can be used by small farmers and agribusiness enterprises. Research will focus on methodology development -- 2 methods for grain drying and 4 for conditioning, storage, and processing -- and applied research in grain quality preservation, marketing systems, and food security. FFGI scientists will also work with 15-20 developing country graduate students to conduct country-specific studies, and collaborate with developing country institutions to determine cost-effective technologies. In addition, FFGI will transfer postharvest technology to international and Third World researchers and practitioners. Training materials (e.g., manuals, audiovisuals) will be created by FFGI and provided to Missions and developing country institutions for use in "training the trainer" courses. FFGI will also improve the Postharvest Documentation Service (PHDS) so that, by the end of the project, new acquisitions will increase by 75%, clients by 40%, and requests by 50%. Further, the FFGI will provide TA to at least 50 clients. FFGI will support short-term technical and long-term academic training as well. This will involve: (1) an annual 7-week course at KSU in grain storage and marketing for operational personnel and mid-level professionals; (2) 10 short-term (3 days to 6 weeks) training sessions in-country and at KSU which deal with country-specific topics; and (3) training in special handling of emergency food supplies. In addition, graduate level participant training in grain science, agricultural engineering, entomology, and agricultural economics will be provided for 25-30 persons using funding from sources outside this project. Finally, FFGI will promote postharvest research and collaboration through networking. FFGI will maintain its membership in the Group for Assistance on Systems Relating to Grains After Harvest (GASGA), and establish new collaborative links with developing country institutions.

The first annual report for the fourth project available from the on-line database is from 1988: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PDAAY257.pdf

Additional annual reports for 1989-90 and 1990-91 can be retrieved from the on-line database. A final report of the 1986-1993 project is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PDABJ747.pdf

A key deliverable of the third and fourth projects was the establishment of FFGI’s Postharvest Documentation Service. It includes citations to publications (journal articles, monographs, book sections) through as recent as 2005. Its original goal was to collect hard copies of citations and make them available for use to overseas food loss prevention projects. The URL to the Refworks database is:


When Dr. Hoover became the first FFGI director, he secured funding for a second project with him as lead PI that was called Improving the Nutritive Value of Cereal Based Foods. It lasted from 1968-1975. It was assigned USAID project number 93610481. “The general objective of this research project was designed to improve the nutritional value of wheat-based food by supplementation and process modification without decreasing the food acceptability to the consuming people in North Africa and Pakistan.”

The project abstract was: Under project begun in 1968 by Kansas State University, soy flour and other protein fortificants have been successfully introduced into leavened bread, significantly raising the nutritional value of the bread. Project calls for a continuation of research on protein supplements to cereal products; integration of fortified flours and cereal products into normal distribution/consumption networks; assessment of economic and sociological benefits of such programs; also surveyed food preferences in LDC'S and investigated possible indigenous sources of protein fortificants.

The first annual report for that project available from the on-line database is from 1968: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNRAB488.pdf

Additional annual reports for 1969 through 1972 can be retrieved from the on-line database. The final "progress" report for the 1968-1975 project is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNRAB492.pdf

A number of additional USAID-funded projects were carried out by the Food and Feed Grains Institute. The last document of a USAID-sponsored project related to KSU’s Food and Feed Grains Institute is a technical report from 1993 which is available at: http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNABQ104.pdf

Once USAID funding stopped, the operation of the Food and Feed Grains Institute essentially ceased. FFGI was moved administratively to the Dean of Agriculture’s office while Dr. Hahn was department head. Most of the personnel were absorbed by University departments. It took many more years before KSU officially removed the FFGI from its books. More information about the Food and Feed Grains Institute is contained in the written recollections of Drs. Shellenberger (1966-76 document), Hoover, Deyoe and Hahn which are available at: /about-us/centennial-celebration/dept-head-histories.html

Fortunately, by the time the Food and Feed Grains Institute ceased, involvement and leadership in international activities by the Department of Grain Science and Industry, College of Agriculture and Kansas State University had been firmly established and become part of our institutional culture. Most notably, the department has continued its tradition of training global food system professionals from academia, government and industry through its International Grains Program (IGP Institute), through hosting visiting scholars from around the globe including Fulbright, Borlaug and Cochran Fellows, and through educating international graduate students pursuing MS and PhD degrees in Grain Science. The department also has a number of active strategic partnerships in India, China, Southern Africa and Latin America, as well as with organizations such as Grains for Hope (http://grainsforhope.com/index.php). Through the former Grain Industry Alliance International, the department was involved in a USAID-funded project in Afghanistan between 2004-06 (http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PDACJ080.pdf; http://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/PNADK474.pdf; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jG3Gj3kH8CA).

Most recently department faculty have been successful in obtaining new grants for international development and collaboration projects in Pakistan,Tanzania, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Ghana and Guatemala. The awarding of the USAID-funded Feed the Future Innovation Lab for the Reduction of Post-Harvest Loss (www.reducePHL.org) builds in part on the past success of the Food and Feed Grain Institute that was also USAID-funded and had similar goals of improving post-harvest handling, drying, storage, processing and utilization of grains and oilseeds while addressing food and nutrition security needs in developing countries.

 Links to key international programs at Kansas State University include:

 International Programs – http://www.k-state.edu/oip/

 International Programs in Agriculture – http://www.ag.k-state.edu/international-programs/

 IGP Institute – http://www.grains.k-state.edu/igp/

  •  Originally created by Dirk E. Maier. Last updated August 26, 2014.