European ICL IAS Polysulphate fertilizer trials in full swing
While for many European farmers this is the busiest period on farms, it is also a highly productive time for the agronomists of the ICL Innovative Ag Solutions (IAS) division in Europe with a record number of field experiments underway.
The agronomy team of IAS in Europe have more than 100 ongoing field trials, with more than 20 crops, and in multiple important locations across Europe. According to ICL’s Agronomy Lead in Europe, Dr Francisco Morell, the fertilizer trial work is an important part of the agronomy team’s responsibility.
“For our IAS agronomists, as well as handling customer queries and giving seasonal advice to farmers they are busy with the setting up and following field trials with customers, farmers, and trial stations”, he explains. “The trial experiments are an essential part of the product development, demonstration and promotion.”
Highly significant trials underway
With so many trials in progress it is impossible to describe them all. However, to Dr Morell, there are a couple that need special mention.
There is a European multi-location set of trials assessing the impact of balanced crop nutrition with Polysulphate, on Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE). It is well known that balanced crop nutrition can make significant contributions to improving NUE, and hence reduced N losses into the environment. The trial (pictured, in Romania) is one of 3 trials run in collaboration with the International Potash Institute across Europe. The other two trial locations are Nauen, Germany and Swiebodzin, in Poland.
Meanwhile from the Netherlands there is an example of a new product trial. Under test is a compost enriched with Polysulphate Standard. “With this product the farmer can give in one application both organic matter and potassium instead of two applications, compost then potassium”, explains Morell. The aim is to supply all round soil improver in one step to the benefit of the soil and to the tuber crop.
The 2021 ICL IAS field trials’ set-up, their results and practical implications for European farming, are the continuation of the experimental programme that already comprises hundreds of trials conducted and completed. This work continues to clearly signpost the benefits of including Polysulphate into the fertilization strategy for crops for greater productivity and better food quality in different farming systems and agroecological conditions.