History of MREC
The UF/IFAS Mid-Florida Research and Education Center (MREC), part of the University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) was originally established as the Central Florida Research & Education Center (CFREC) in the fall of 1986 by administratively combining research centers at Apopka, Leesburg, and Sanford. A new research and education facility was constructed on land next to the old Apopka center.
As part of UF/IFAS’s commitment to Florida growers and producers, each of the original units was established to address various industry concerns:
|Conduct research on environmental horticulture crops in the areas of nutrition, water use, breeding, plant pathology, entomology, economics, and general plant culture.|
|Conduct research on vegetable and fruit crops in the areas of breeding, plant pathology, entomology, developmental biology, and horticulture.|
|Conduct research on ornamental plants, vegetable crops on sand and organic soils and ecology of midges. Research areas include plant pathology, horticulture, and entomology.|
In order to better meet industry-wide needs, the three centers were combined to enable researchers to more easily share information and provide a central location for Central Florida growers and producers.
Today, more than 60 staff and 12 faculty focus on research to address the needs of Floridians, which includes integrated pest management, water conservation, agricultural economics, plant pathology and genetics, all to maintain a greener lifestyle.