FERTILIGENCIA - Fertilizantes innovadores para reducir el impacto ambiental de la agricultura y desarrollo de un estándar para evaluar la sostenibilidad de agroecosistemas
Dates: July 2018 – December 2021
Leader: FERTINAGRO BIOTECH
Grant agreement number: RTC-2017-5887-5
Financed by FEDER y Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades – Agencia Estatal de Investigación
Objetivo principal: Promover el desarrollo tecnológico la innovación y una investigación de calidad
Plants form a dynamic ecosystem with the soil. The soil is composed of a physical-chemical structure, in which different organisms and microorganisms that interact with each other, with the plant and with any type of agricultural input applied to the soil coexist. Knowledge of the relationships established in a soil is essential to act on it at any level. This project develops a new conception of agriculture, what we call “Fertiligence”, which consists of the creation of innovative fertilizers that take into account not only the plant but the entire ecological system of which it forms part. It is an intelligent fertilization based on the knowledge of the ecosystem: soil – soil microbiology – plant. The project aims to develop different innovative fertilizer products consisting of the addition of different excipients to conventional fertilizers of Phosphorus and Nitrogen, increasing the efficiency of these elements. The sustainability of the agricultural systems is favoured thanks to the increase of the fertilizing efficiency of these macronutrients, by means of:
Decrease in the amount of fertilizers applied per hectare
Reduction of diffuse pollution caused by the application of fertilizers (emission of greenhouse gases, leaching and pollution of groundwater and surface water).
Reduction of the carbon footprint generated in the manufacture of these innovative products, on the one hand requires less fertilizer and on the other, the raw material of the additive comes from industrial by-products.
Today many soils are in the process of degradation due to climate change and human action. The aim of this project is to increase the efficiency of the fertilisers supplied to the soil, thus avoiding the loss of soil fertility resulting from an excessive and poorly managed application of fertilisers that is currently being carried out. Another fundamental role of soil in the fight against climate change is its capacity to capture CO2 through the accumulation of organic carbon. Bearing in mind that the project aims to reduce the ecological impact of fertilization and is aimed at optimizing resources, Fertinagro Biotech proposes to develop all new fertilizer products based on the Circular Economy. The excipients used will be produced mostly by microbiological fermentation using as raw materials, by-products discarded by other industries, such as glycerol from the biofuel industry.
Development of new fertilizer products to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector and improve soil fertility by optimizing the assimilation of nitrogen and phosphorus and the recovery of existing nutrients in soils through biostimulants.
Evaluation of the effectiveness of new fertilizer products developed on the growth and production of plant material in agronomic tests at different scales (laboratory, greenhouse and field).
With the knowledge generated, design of a methodology based on exergy that serves as a guide for the development of new innovative fertilizers.
From the methodology, creation of a standard to evaluate in a simple but rigorous way the reduction of emissions and the sustainability of the agricultural process.
CIRCE will be in charge of developing a rigorous method to evaluate the reduction of emissions and the sustainability of agroecosystems. The development of this method will be nourished by the data collected by Fertinagro with the help of Aula DEI. With this method, the new fertilizers developed in the project will be evaluated efficiently and will be proposed as a standard.