New Jersey Educator Donates Historic U.S. Soils Collection to National Agriculture Library

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service formally transfers the 1916 U.S. soil collection and publication, “Important Soils of the United States” to the USDA National Agricultural Library for safekeeping and archival purposes in Beltsville, MD on Aug. 19, 2015. USDA photo by Anson Eaglin.

On Aug. 19, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service formally transferred the 1916 U.S. soil collection and publication, “Important Soils of the United States,” to the USDA National Agricultural Library for safekeeping and archival purposes in Beltsville, MD.

On Aug. 19, fifty people including staff from the University of Maryland, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), National Agriculture Library (NAL), members of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Professional Soil Scientists, Rutgers, and the Firman E. Bear Soil and Water Conservation Society gathered at the NAL for a ceremony to convey a historic 1916 U.S. soils collection. The donor, Jill Guenther, a Vineland, NJ educator, donated a historic collection of U.S. soils to the Library where the collection will be archived for safekeeping, included in Library exhibits, and available upon request for onsite inspection. [Read more…]

State-of-the-Art Radon Training Facility Built at Rutgers

State-of-the-art radon training slab at Rutgers.

State-of-the-art radon training lab at Rutgers.

Rutgers recently redesigned and constructed a cutting-edge radon training lab for hands-on learning.

For over 25 years, the Eastern Regional Radon Training Center (ERRTC) at Rutgers University has been providing professionals throughout the country with training in radon measurement and mitigation. To offer students an even better learning experience, the ERRTC opened a brand-new, state-of-the-art training facility on Cook Campus in July 2015.

“Watching the new radon training facility being built from the ground up has been really interesting,” said Program Coordinator Pamela Springard-Mayer. The new facility was used for the first time by students attending a Radon Mitigation class this summer.

In the past, the hands-on portions of the Rutgers three-day Radon Mitigation Proficiency Course were taught at Rutgers’ Environmental Health and Safety Building in Piscataway, affectionately known as the “slab.” For many years, the mock crawl space and attic at the slab did a great job of mimicking the conditions of real-world vapor intrusion situations; however, the building was getting dingy and dusty with age. Regardless of its interesting military history, the slab needed a face-lift. [Read more…]

Tracking a Rarely Seen, Endangered ‘Ninja’ Shark in the Philippines

ShutterShark300Rutgers marine scientist Thomas Grothues’ expertise is featured in a Discovery Channel documentary on sharks that have developed adaptations to help them become effective predators. Read more at Rutgers Today.

Nutrition Professor Publishes Book on Mediterranean Diet Pioneers, Ancel and Margaret Keys

Joseph Dixon book coverJoseph Dixon, associate professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences, has self-published a new book, Genius and Partnership: Ancel and Margaret Keys and the Discovery of the Mediterranean Diet.

The book centers on physiologist Ancel Keys and his wife and co-researcher Margaret Keys, a biochemist, as they scour the world for clues to the causes of heart attacks that were killing American men at an alarming rate in the 1950s. Their journey leads to the start of the groundbreaking Seven Countries Study and contributions to the discovery of low-density lipoprotein (LDL). It also led to their writing three New York Times best-selling cookbooks that promoted the health benefits of the Mediterranean Diet. [Read more…]

New Brunswick Community Farmers Market – “Community” is Our Middle Name

New Jersey FoodCorps member Thalya Reyes and New Brunswick pre-schooler Julio, savoring the fragrance of fresh basil at New Brunswick Community Farmers Market.

New Jersey FoodCorps member Thalya Reyes and New Brunswick pre-schooler Julio, savoring the fragrance of fresh basil at New Brunswick Community Farmers Market.

National Farmers Market Week (August 2–8, 2015) is a week-long celebration of our nation’s farmers markets, the farmers and ranchers who make them possible, and the communities that host them. This year marks the 16th annual National Farmers Market Week recognizing the important role that farmers markets play in our local food economies. A perfect example of a model farm market that really gives back to the community is the New Brunswick Community Farmers Market, a project in partnership with the City of New Brunswick, Rutgers Cooperative Extension, and Johnson & Johnson.

For New Brunswick Community Farmers Market, “community” really is their middle name. Besides bringing New Jersey farm fresh produce into urban New Brunswick, the market hosts a number of ways for residents to grow their own and connect with fresh local food.

Senior Program Coordinator Sarah Dixon describes how the market enables residents to obtain fresh food. “The New Brunswick Community Farmers Market was started in 2009 to offer New Brunswick residents – especially those at risk for food insecurity – access to fresh, locally grown, affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate produce and other food products. Whenever you spend any kind of nutrition assistance dollars with us (such as WIC or SNAP) we give half back in Market Bucks to help stretch food budgets to include Jersey Fresh produce during the harvest season.” The market is more than a just vending location. Dixon continues, “Our home base on Jones Avenue started as a 36 raised-bed community garden, and has grown over the years to include a children’s garden, lots of additional growing spaces, hoop houses, a greenhouse, a chicken coop, beehives, and a vermicomposting bin. The gardens are grown and maintained by the community, with frequent volunteer support.”

[Read more…]