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VSU College of Agriculture News Release

Published date: November 27, 2013

Dr. Yixang Xu, food processing/engineering assistant professor in Virginia State University’s Agricultural Research Station, has been awarded two competitive grants totaling $320,351.


The first is a three-year USDA capacity-building grant in the amount of $291,165 which will fund research on the use of nanotechnology in food packaging. The research aims to develop antimicrobial, biodegradable-based food packaging films to address food safety, environmental and agricultural concerns associated with ready-to-eat food products and to extend the shelf life of perishable food products.

Xu’s second project, under auspices of a two-year $29,186 specialty crop block grant from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, will enhance VSU’s ongoing efforts to develop commercial chickpea varieties suitable for production in Virginia and to familiarize Virginia farmers with chickpeas. Determining chickpea seed composition for hummus production will help meet needs of food processors and bridge the gap between farmers and the food industry.

For more information, contact Xu at (804) 524-5668 or email

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