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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Overview of the USDA Agricultural Research Service

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ARS conducts scientific research to develop and transfer solutions to agricultural problems of high national priority and to provide information access and dissemination to:

  • Ensure high-quality safe food and other products
  • Assess the nutritional needs of Americans
  • Sustain a competitive agricultural economy
  • Enhance the natural resource base and the environment
  • Provide economic opportunities to rural citizens and society as a whole

ARS Profile

  • Intramural scientific research agency of USDA
  • Farm-to-table research scope
  • Information and technology transfer
  • Administration and stakeholder priority-setting process
  • National Research Programs
  • Partnerships with other agencies, universities, and industry
  • International collaborations
  • 800 projects
  • 2,200 scientists and postdocs
  • 6,200 other employees
  • 90+ research locations, including overseas laboratories






ARS' core disciplinary capacity, associated resources, and research projects are categorized
into four program areas that span the full scope of ARS' mission responsibilities: Animal
Production and Protection; Crop Production and Protection; Natural Resources and
Sustainable Agricultural Systems; and Nutrition, Food Safety, and Quality.

An array of research projects constitute each of the program areas and address specific scientific
objectives that contribute to USDA research priorities and outcomes including enhanced
agricultural productivity and food security, adaptation to climate change, human nutrition
and health, food safety, and renewable bioenergy production.




USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Revised April 2012


Last Modified: 9/9/2016
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