2009 OCIA R&E Scholarship Recipient
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Awards - OCIA Research & Education Scholarships
PradeepNampoothiry_smallPradeep Kumar Nampoothiry, a student at the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, was selected as the recipient of the Organic Crop Improvement Association Research and Education (OCIA R&E) 2009 Scholarship Award.

Pradeep Kumar Nampoothiry will use the $1,000 award towards a project that will develop strategies and test natural products to repel or control house flies in organic dairy production. Specifically, products that can repel house flies in dairy barn and pasture situations along with methods to limit the development of flies in the bedding will be evaluated.

Nampoothiry chose this project due to an on-farm survey of transitioning dairy farmers in Ontario, which showed that milk yields for transitioning dairy farms decrease by 9.8% between their last conventional year and their first organic year. Production techniques that will improve organic yields and animal health are desperately needed. Pest flies and other arthropod parasites in animal production can spread disease and reduce cattle feeding efficiency, which affects weight gain, milk production and milk fat content.

“This research project will open up vistas to work towards my career objective of working for organizations and research institutions that advocate environment friendly agricultural practices,” said Nampoothiry. “The study of insect pest management with special relevance to organic livestock production would be an interesting and challenging subject, as this would lead to a more sustainable agriculture in the long run.”

OCIA Research and Education’s scholarship recipient was chosen during the Organic Crop Improvement Association’s (OCIA) Annual General Membership Meeting, which was held at the Holiday Inn Downtown in Lincoln, NE, Feb. 7th-9th.