Home » Grants and Program Support

Grants and Program Support

Over the last 20 years I am grateful to be involved in millions of dollars of federal and state-supported research.  Funding from the USDA, NSF and Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services account for the vast majority of research support, with additional generous support from the Florida Research and Education Foundation.

Current Research Funding

Rapid Strawberry Variety Improvement using Epigenetic Variation.  Florida Strawberry Research and Education Foundation. (2019-2021)  $52,230

Development of Low-Chill Olive with Gene Editing.  Hardee County Florida, 2019-2022  $230,000.

Previous Research Grants

Light Regulation of Post-Harvest Fruit Quality.  USDA/NIFA (2015-2019) PI, $500,000

Improving Strawberry Germplasm via Targeted Introgression of Genetic Diversity and Characterization of Flavor Genes.  UF Plant Molecular Breeding Initiative (2014-2018).  Co-PI, $180,000

New Herbicide Chemistries Discovered in Functional Randomness.  Bayer Crop Science. (2017-      2018).  PI  $58,000.

New Products and Treatments Based on Small Interfering Peptides. University of Florida Innovation Grant (2015-2017), PI, $85,000

Development of a Precision Breeding Platform for Florida Strawberries. Florida Strawberry Research and Education Foundation (2014-2016)  Co-PI  $48,618

Developing Superior Flavor in Florida Strawberries (Part II): From Lab to Market. USDA Specialty Crops State Block Grant (2013-2015) Co-PI $284,456.

Identification and Characterization of Genes Related to Strawberry Flavor.  Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellowship (European Union) to support the work of visiting scholar Dr. Iriada Amaya. $21,219  (2013-2015).

Improving Strawberry Germplasm via Targeted Introgression of Genetic Diversity and Characterization of Flavor Genes. Plant Molecular Breeding Initiative (2010-2014). Co-PI,$180,000.

Characterization of Fruit-Specific Strawberry Promoters and Novel Transcripts. Simplot Research Agreement (2012-2013) PI, $58,000; $48,000 (2013-2014), $50,000 (2014-2015).

CAREER: Analysis of a Novel Aspect of Photomorphogenic Development and its Application to Graduate Student Training. National Science Foundation (2008 – 2013). PI, $985,985

Developing Superior Flavor in Florida Strawberries: A Consumer-Assisted Breeding Approach. USDA Specialty Crops Block Grant (2011-2012) PI, $253,353

Characterization of Novel Expressed Transcripts in the Rosaceae.  National Science Foundation (2007-2010)  PI,  $1,005,585.

Selecting a sunn hemp cover crop genotype for weed suppression and seed production. USDA/SARE.  (2008-2009)  Co-PI, $200,000.

Material support for visiting scientists. North American Strawberry Growers & California Strawberry Growers.  (2007-2008)  PI, $4000

Funding for strawberry researchers to attend the NASS/NASGA symposium. USDA  (2007) PI $10,000

Bioengineering Strawberries for Nematode Resistance in Sub-Tropical and Tropical Environments.  USDA (2006-2009) PI,  $100,000

Implementation of high-throughput amplicon sequencing to obtain chloroplast sequence. NSF / Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) (2007-2008) Co-PI, $17,000

The role of green light in combinatorial light treatments. NSF/Research Opportunity Award. (2006-2007) PI, $20,782

Pilot high throughput strawberry gene sequencing using 454 technology. North American Strawberry Growers Association (2006) PI, $4700

Identification of Fruit-Specific Promoters in Strawberry. Florida Strawberry Growers Association. 2005-2006. PI, $6270

Gene Pair Haplotypes and Sequence Samples from Strawberry (Rosaceae), Multi-Purpose, Transferable Resources for Genomics and Variety Improvement.  USDA (2005-2008).  Co-PI, $330,000.

Chloroplast transformation in cereals.  Ohio Biotechnology Research Consortium. (2005-2006) Co-PI, $40,000

Green Light Sensing, Integration and Response During Photomorphogenic Development.  National Science Foundation (2004-2007).  PI, $318,845.

Initial Development of a Bioinformatics Platform for Strawberry Improvement.  Florida Strawberry Research and Education Foundation. (2004).  PI, $2750

Paid Consulting- Prior to 2020 I declined opportunities to pursue paid consulting, simply because I didn’t like the optics of being paid for my expertise as a public employee.  However, since the internet has declared me a “paid consultant of industry” and the 2015 New York Times article refers to me as “part of an inner circle of industry consultants, lobbyists and executives”, so I figure I should actually get paid for such work. All activities are pursued outside of work time. 

Bush Brothers Beans, Knoxville, TN –

Sustaintech, Toronto Canada (pending)

Talking Biotech Podcast — 100% self funded by Kevin Folta personally.

Educational Outreach and Communication Workshops

Until 2019 almost all honoraria and speaker fees did not go to Folta personally.  Instead they went to the Talking Biotech Fund at the University of Florida.  Those funds are used for distribution of science fair kits, shipment of materials for students, support of graduate student travel, and other activities in science outreach.  Support is almost 100% from small, personal donors.  After Jan 1, 2019, after losing income and a position because of rabid activists, Folta does receive honoraria personally, as extensive time away from family and lab should be reimbursed at some level.  All of these honoraria are listed in the outreach report.

Compensation for Writing and Video

Dr. Folta receives no personal compensation for written work or video production, as this is part of his job as a Land Grant University employee.  Occasionally he will be reimbursed for mileage and use of his personal vehicle if used for research for an article. That is done at the federal rate of $0.55/mile.

Other Income

Dr. Folta served as a Subject Matter Expert for a law firm analyzing old data for their presentation in a private mediation. He completed the work outside of work hours and on vacation hours, and was personally compensated for his time.  All information was fully disclosed as mandated by university policy, with respect to the confidentiality of the parties involved in this private mediation.



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