The goal of our 170-hectare agricultural research facility is to develop specialised fertiliser that will meet all requirements of farms as well as greenhouses, today and in the future.
Therefore, we place a special focus on
- increasing nutrient utilisation and therefore further improving environmental sustainability by adding nitrogen stabilisers.
- developing combined nitrogen and sulphur fertilisers
- economical and environmentally friendly use of mineral and organic fertiliser
The Quest for New Nitrogen Stabilisers
The focus of these initiatives is the development of new substances that minimise nitrogen loss which is an environmental hazard. The goal is to reduce the risk of nitrogen erosion and the emission of climate-relevant gases.
Minimising nitrogen loss means improving nitrogen utilisation by plants, leading to higher yields and greater profits for users. On the basis of comprehensive synthesis initiatives at SKW Piesteritz, new combinations have been created, the effects of which will be screened through laboratory testing.
We focus on developing highly efficient nitrification inhibitors for mineral and organic fertiliser.
Laboratory and Greenhouse Trials
In laboratories, new substances are tested using powerful, specific test systems to develop highly effective nitrification inhibitors. Using modern test methods, the soil model test shows the effects of the new combinations and their effect on inhibiting microbial oxidation of reduced nitrogen (urea- and ammonium-containing nitrogen fertiliser)
Besides selecting promising substances, tests are conducted on nitrification activity; leaching ratio, the biological effects of the substances or the transformation of nitrogen and sulphur in soil. Testing of the ecotoxicological impact or the residue behaviour in soil and plants is conducted by GLP- and GEP-certified institutes.
In the greenhouse, a Mitscherlich vessel is used for the model test of selected effects and combined. Testing focuses primarily on the following criteria:
- Proof of effectiveness in relation to application amount, type of fertiliser, type of soil and formulation
- Reduction of nitrogen loss potential
- Effect on yield parameters and ingredients
Toxicology and Environmental Impact
A prerequisite for the development of nitrogen-stabilising fertiliser is eliminating the risk of harm to humans, animals and the environment as a whole. Therefore, all products follow the provisions of fertiliser legislation.
The toxicological and ecotoxicological harmlessness and the environmental impact of the products must be proven to the Economic Advisory Board for Fertilisation Issues of the Federal Ministry of Consumer Protection, Nutrition and Agriculture, which is the relevant competent authority.
The field tests deal with the application-technical evaluation and the development of fertilisation systems in terms of their effects on yield, nitrogen utilisation, loss reduction and economic viability.
Field tests to determine application recommendations for fertilisers are conducted:
- under different site conditions (weather, soil etc.);
- on numerous agricultural crops and varieties
- through annual comparisons and long-term testing
- on our own test sites and on those of our partners
Practical Trials and Marketability
Practice Trials occur after thorough analysis and take place either on our own 170-hectare agricultural test site or on a partner's site.
Only after this process is complete can we guarantee that farmers can increase their yields and therefore their profitability through proper application of fertiliser. SKW Piesteritz also develops specific application recommendations to enhance the effect of our products. Our clients and partners also value the fact that each product guarantees a high level of environmental sustainability.