Importance of investments in R&D for the plant nutrition market

By Carlos Landerdahl, commercial and marketing director at Ubyfol

29.06.2023 | 11:54 (UTC -3)

The Research and Development area within agribusiness has been following an upward trajectory. It is now common to see innovative solutions and startups developed especially to improve the journey of food, from field to table. From soil preparation to harvesting, technologies are present to maximize production potential.

Within the topic, we can highlight some fundamental pillars for investment in R&D in plant physiology to occur accurately: biostimulants, adjuvants, application technology and solutions for chelation and complexation.

In the case of biostimulants, since plants have an increasingly higher production ceiling and, at the same time, are more sensitive to stress, they will need a greater load of natural stimulation. Knowing this, we see a significant change in the next three or five years that may require a load of amino acids, natural and synthetic stimulation. This means, going beyond the application of potassium (K), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P). To achieve this, the use of biostimulants will play a fundamental role in plant physiology. The last four years have shown an increase in the use of biostimulants by farmers, recognizing them as a tool for their management.

Regarding adjuvants and application technology, we believe that having more efficient operations is essential for the producer as it provides greater speed of reaching the target. In this sense, one of the roles of the adjuvant is to act as a facilitator of the penetration and spread of the product to cover the leaf surface, acting so that the application is of quality and efficient, avoiding waste and ensuring an increasingly greater return on the farmer's investment. .

We also have chelation and complexation technologies, which are chemical groups that will help protect nutrients and penetrate them into the plant. Investments in research on this subject have proven relevant and promising to make formulations more stable in the application mixture and easier to absorb and assimilate by the plant.

Working in a company that has been a pioneer in the plant nutrition market for 37 years, it is possible to observe an advance in these three factors, which has caused the nutritional needs of plants to increase, stimulating, in the last 15 years, a growing movement of investment by companies in science.

I believe that, through the study of plant physiology, we will be able to expand the umbrella of available nutrients and technologies, allowing these factors to become increasingly connected with the demands of rural producers and providing the delivery of a better product that meets to the nutritional needs of crops.

The path towards the evolution of plant nutrition and investments in this sector still needs to rely on one more pillar: the farmer's strategic look at nutritional issues in a preventive and non-reactive way, including nutrient management in harvest planning. It is necessary to reinforce with the producer that, by combining nutrition with technology, it is possible to support the plant in its metabolic processes so that it can more efficiently synthesize the nutrient that will make the plant produce more. By taking this type of knowledge directly to the field, we will possibly have more space in the development of solutions and technologies for the sector.

By Carlos Landerdahl, commercial and marketing director at Ubyfol

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