With the Depression came a shortage of funding for agricultural research. Seeing a need for continued research and development in food, agriculture, and natural resources, in 1934 a coalition of industry leaders contributed $1,000 to create the Agricultural Research Foundation. The purpose was to encourage and promote scientific experimentation in all branches of agriculture and related fields for the benefit of the agricultural industry.
The foundation continues today as a nonprofit corporation that collaborates closely with Oregon’s diverse agricultural industries to support research projects conducted by scientists associated with the Agricultural Experiment Station. Each year, the foundation awards seed money to the College of Agricultural Sciences through its Competitive Grant program. For the 2012–2013 fiscal year, the Foundation’s General Fund awarded $398,790 to initiate 33 new projects.