Feeding the world’s growing population
New Zealand’s reputation as a quality food producer is growing.
The Fertiliser Association of New Zealand promotes and encourages responsible and scientifically-based nutrient management.
As a long-term supporter of PhD projects, we're pleased to see the publication of research undertaken by two Massey University students that the Association has supported through their studies.
Gere Thangavelautham recently completed his PhD research investigating the 'Impact of phosphate fertiliser derived fluorine on soil microbiology and white clover'. His research has now been published at can be read here: Fluorine and white clover: Assessing fluorine's impact on Rhizobium leguminosarum
It provides information about accumulation of soil fluorine, investigating the levels at which available fluorine may impact on the function of important soil microbes such as rhizobium, which helps make atmospheric nitrogen available to plants.
The findings are that negative effects of soil fluorine on microorganisms are not observed unless levels are many times higher than the typical levels found in our agricultural soils across New Zealand.
Find out more about Gere's research here.
Another student, Nilusha Ubeynarayana, has recently published information about differences in uptake of the element cadmium from soil, and its movement within the forage plants chicory and plantain. It analyses cadmium uptake from root to shoot!
Food standards set limits on cadmium in primary produce to protect human health. This new publication explains that for these animal forage species, the varieties which secrete different organic acids from their roots, will result in different levels of cadmium uptake. Understanding these mechanisms helps with breeding and selection programmes of these forage plants to reduce cadmium levels in agricultural produce and ultimately, the food chain.
Find out more about Nilusha's research here.