A vital and healthy soil is the basis for ecological stability and therefore a prerequisite for sustainable crop production. NMI combines expertise on soil biology with expertise on chemical and physical aspects of the soil quality. This leads to new insights into how soil management can respond to changes in soil quality. We use measurement techniques and calculation methods to give practical advice. An example of this is SoilQ. This provides a comprehensive assessment of soil quality. Symbiont is a tool that can map the specific biological soil quality within a plot.

NMI approaches soil vitality using the concept of soil functions. For example in agriculture, the soil resilience, structural stability and nutrient supply are important functions of the soil. The degree to which a soil can provide these functions is related to both soil biodiversity and the abiotic soil characteristics such as organic matter content, acidity and moisture supply. Soil vitality is the combined result of the historical and current soil management techniques within a plot. It can be regarded as the expression of the recovery capacity of the soil, for example, after a period of less sustainable land use and / or bad weather. Soil biodiversity plays an essential role in various processes in the soil and in maintaining a sustainable soil quality. NMI is working on tools to assess soil quality and vitality and therefore to enable regulation of these factors within a specific plot.

Contact: Debby van Rotterdam
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