UC Davis and Ilias Tagkopoulos to establish the Artificial Intelligence Institute for Next-Generation Food Systems after being awarded a $20 million grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The AI Institute for Next Generation Food Systems (AIFS) is part of a nationwide network of seven AI Institutes formed by the USDA, NIFA and NSF with the aim to accelerate research, expand America’s workforce, and prepare society for the future.
Ilias Tagkopoulos, Institute director and Principal Investigator, will oversee activities aimed at integrating state-of-the-art AI technologies and bioinformatics to boost food system efficiency from production through consumption. The Institute’s mission is to enable a sustainable, nutritious, safe and efficient food supply that mitigates the food system’s impact on the environment. According to the official statement by the University of California, Davis, AIFS will double down on crop quality and disease resistance through molecular breeding, plant trait optimization, food processing and distribution, and waste reduction by pairing AI, robotics and sensing technologies.
The initiative brings together researchers and scientists from UC Davis, UC Berkeley; Cornell University; the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; UC Agriculture and Natural Resources; and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service.