Digital Agriculture uses new and advanced technologies to enable farmers and businesses to improve food production and distribution. Researchers at The University of Arizona utilize cutting-edge technologies such as AI, Machine Learning, Sensors and Social Media to devise tools that empower stakeholders to make better informed decisions and ensure that we will be able to sustainably feed the growing world population.
Monica Schmidt is an Associate Professor in the School of Plant Sciences in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and the BIO5 Institute at the University of Arizona. Her PhD in Genetics is from the University of British Columbia. Dr. Schmidt’s research interests are in both functional foods and functional genomics. Her research aims at applying molecular biology and genetic techniques to help alleviate major agricultural problems. She works primarily in seed traits in the global commodities soybean and maize. Current research involves investigating cellular mechanisms to enhance the metabolic engineering efforts to fortify crops with nutraceutical carotenoids. Dr. Schmidt is also investigating means to engineer a healthier oil as soybean oil is a major component in the American diet. Other functional food projects aim at the suppression of deleterious compounds in crops, such as toxins produced from contaminating fungus, in maize and peanuts. She uses techniques of genomics and plant biotechnology in crops to investigate gene function, at a cellular and entire plant level. Stakeholder agencies, private foundations and federal grants have funded her research.