SoilMate’s Weekly News Digest #15
Hello Guys! Friday always comes with SoilMate’s News Digest. So, let’s check our Agtech and FoodTech News collection!
Scientists found five new listeria species in agricultural soils
While studying the prevalence of listeria in agricultural lands in the United States, Cornell University dieticians came across five previously unknown and new relatives of bacteria. According to researchers, this discovery will help food processors identify potential growth niches that may have been ignored so far, thus improving food safety.
«Expanding the knowledge base to understand the diversity of listeria will save the commercial food world confusion and errors, prevent contamination, explain false positives and thwart foodborne outbreaks,» said lead author Catharine R. Carlin, a doctoral student in food science.
Global land use is more extensive than estimated
Scientists from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) combined satellite data with statistics from the last 60 years and found that global land-use changes affect about 32 percent of the land area. The researchers published their findings in Nature Communications. The maps show that land-use changes have affected nearly one-third of the world’s land area in just six decades, about four times the size previously known from the long-term analysis. Researchers also point to differences between North and South. Consequently, in the Global North, for example in Europe, the USA, or Russia, forests have expanded, and the arable land area has decreased, while in the Global South, for example in Brazil or Indonesia, forest areas have reduced and arable as well as pasture lands have increased.
Corn growers seeing high pressure of nematodes
In late April 2021, Pioneer interviewed corn producers in the US and asked them, «What is the pressure level of corn nematodes in your fields?» In the responses of 448 manufacturers across the country, 32 percent responded «low pressure,» 31 percent responded «moderate pressure,» 12 percent responded «high pressure,» and 25 percent responded, «don’t know.»
«When I look at what farmers said about their nematode pressure, 43 percent have either medium or high nematode pressure — the level of pressure that can start affecting yields. It’s definitely a problem that needs to be addressed,» said Mary Gumz, Pioneer Agronomy Science Manager.
Research shows fungicides in soybean at R3 boost yield
To help farmers find new ways to increase yields, researchers from Missouri spent three years on a «MU Certified» Strip Trial Program. The program has shown that applying fungicides to soybean at the R3 growth stage reduces leaf disease and increases yields in soybean farmers.
The trial looked at fungicide-treated and untreated soybean. Farmers could choose which fungicide to apply to the growth stage of R3. «Farmers control all other management decisions,» said MU Extension nutrient management specialist John Lory, who leads the strip trial program. Trials show that fungicide application increased yield by 1.5 bushels per acre, with a 90% probability that the mean response across all locations was 1.2 to 2.2 bushels per acre.