Muck analysis offered at Grassland event

Farmers are being invited to try a new muck analysis technique by bringing a manure or slurry sample to the Grassland and Muck Event on 18-19 May at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire.

The innovative approach which uses Near Infrared Reflectance Spectroscopy (NIRS) will help farmers analyse the nutrient content of manures rapidly and accurately – and at a lower cost than before.

The first 25 farmers each day to bring along a maximum of two samples to the AHDB stand in the muck area will qualify for free analysis. Results will be sent to farmers after the event.

A LINK-funded research project has developed the innovative approach to predict total and ammonium nitrogen, phosphate, potash, magnesium and sulphur content of manures, slurries and biosolids. NIRS is already widely used for the analysis of silages and cereal grains.

The demonstration will be run by a joint team from HGCA, DairyCo, EBLEX, BPEX, Potato Council and research contractors Eurofins and ADAS, who can provide more information on the service.

Nigel Penlington, BPEX environment manager, said “This analysis technique enables farmers to manage nutrients with greater confidence. It will help reduce the environmental impact of manure use and increase profitability.”

This project has also developed a predictive capability for NIRS to estimate the rate and extent of nitrogen (N) release when manures are applied in the field.

Benefits of the NIRS service include:

• Reliability of results (of great significance with solid manures)

• Rapid service

• Reduced cost




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