Russell Freed, Ph.D.

Russell Freed

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Professor, International Agronomy - Current research relates to canola, oats, barley and international development activities.
Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences

(517) 353-0213


BSc. Goshen College
MSc. Michigan State University
PhD Michigan State University, Crop Science

Overview of current program:

Dr. Russ Freed, plant breeder and administrator, has been involved in international development and breeding for over 40 years, working 8 years for IRRI, living in Sri Lanka, Indonesia and the Philippines (1972-80) before coming to MSU in 1980.  In addition to his breeding program, Dr. Freed was Deputy Director for the Bean/Cowpea CRSP for 10 years, Acting Associate Dean and Director of the Institute of International Agriculture for 2.5 years, 2 year sabbatical with the World Bank, Acting Director of Partnership for Food Industry Development – Fruits and Vegetables (2 years) and Associate Chair of the Crop and Soil Sciences Department.  Dr. Freed has developed and/or reviewed international development projects for USAID, Ford Foundation, the World Bank and consulting firms.  He developed an agricultural research software program, MSTAT, which he sold to researchers in over 120 countries. 

Courses taught:  

  • CSS 294 –International agriculture seminar;
  • CSS 441 – Plant Breeding and biotechnology;
  • CSS 880 – Scientific Communication and Professional Development;
  • HRT 892 – Plant Breeding Seminar.



  1. Enhancing Home Gardens in Northern Sri Lanka: A Promising Approach for Post-conflict Food and Nutritional Security and Livelihood Development. 2013, Galhena, D.H., Mikunthan, G., Russell Freed and K. Maredia.  Agriculture and Food Security.
  2. Seed Banks, Russell Freed, Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy, J. Baird Callicott and Robert Frodeman, Editors in chief, 2009.
  3. The Role of Computers in International Development. Russell Freed, Norwegian Journal of Agricultural Sciences, No 22, 1996 pg. 19-21.
  4. Agriculture and Environment: Bridging Food Production and Environmental Protection in Developing Countries.  ASA Special Publication No. 60, A.S.R. Juo and Russell D. Freed, Editors, 1995.
  5. Oat Grain Beta-Gllucan Content as Affected by Nitrogen Level, Location and Year. 1994. B.R. Brunner and R. D. Freed. Crop Science 34:473-476
  6. Registration of Hillsdale Wheat.  R.D. Freed, E.H. Everson, P.K. Zwer, B.L.  Marchetti, D.W.  Fulbright,  J.L. Clayton and R.L. Clements.  Paper No. 11236.  Crop Science, Vol.26, Jan-Feb. 1986.
  7. Registration of Frankenmuth Wheat.  E. Everson, R. Freed, P. Zwer, B. Marchetti, J. Clayton, R. Gallun, and W. Yamazaki.  Crop Science, Vol. 26, Jan-Feb. 1986.
  8. Registration of Augusta Wheat.  E. Everson, R. Freed, P. Zwer, B. Marchetti,   Clayton, R. Gallun and W. Yamazaki.  Crop Science, Vol. 26, Jan-Feb. 1986.
  9. A positive association of the Orange Wheat Blossom Midge, Sitodiplosis mosellana (Gehin) with glume blotch, Septoria nodorum (Berk.), Journal of Economic Entomology, 1982
  10. MSTAT: A software program for plant breeders. Russell Freed. 2007. Chapter in “Principles of Plant Genetics and Breeding”. George Acquaah
  11. The User's Guide to MSTAT (Version 2.0) V.W. Smail, T. Stilwell, A. Ghaderi, D. Reicosky, O. Nissen and R. Freed.  February 1984.