Tag Archives: acpfg

This week on Harvest: grapevines, nitrogen and food security

This week on Harvest , we’ll be talking to Associate Professor Brent Kaiser from the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine about his research on nitrogen uptake and utilisation in plants as well as the Bachelor of Viticulture and Oenology program in the lead-up to the University’s Open Day

We’ll be continuing our ‘Grape to Glass’ segment by heading a little further up the plant with a look at grapevine physiology, and we’ll also be continuing our look at Food Security when we talk to Dr Andrew Jacobs from the ACPFG about the role that science plays.

We’ll also be having our regular look at some of the agriculture, food and wine stories in the news. Join us from 3.00pm to 4.00pm SA time on 101.5 FM in Adelaide, on digital radio or online at https://radio.adelaide.edu.au/

Podcasts of the interviews will be available after 5.00pm SA time at https://radio.adelaide.edu.au/program/harvest/

ACPFG Promotes: Peter Langridge on Radio National ‘Australia Talks’ TONIGHT 6pm.

Australia Talks Interview: Food Security

Food prices have hit an all-time high this year, according to the United Nations. In fact anger over sharp hikes in the price of food staples helped spark the bloody riots in the Middle East this year, as well as protests in India. So are we at the verge of a new food crisis? And could that have implications for global stability?

You will find a brief blurb about the interview on the Australia Talks website at:

http://www.abc.net.au/rn/australiatalks/stories/2011/3172871.htm

The show airs at 6pm.

The telephone number if you wish to be a caller on the show is 1300 22 55 76.

The show airs on:

Adelaide 729AM | Brisbane 792AM | Canberra 846AM Darwin 657AM |
Gold Coast
90.1FM | Hobart 585AM Melbourne 621AM | Newcastle 1512AM
Perth 810AM | Sydney 576AM

Regards,

Amanda Hudswell
Communications Manager – Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics Pty Ltd
Skype address : amanda.hudswell1
www.acpfg.com.au

Plant Genomics Centre, Hartley Grove, Urrbrae SA 5064
Postal address : PMB 1, Glen Osmond South Australia 5064
Ph : 08 8303 7230 or : 0400 322 272

Improving Nitrogen and Phosphorus use of cereals to help food security

Friday 24th September marks the final day of the 15th International Workshop on Plant Membrane Biology, and is a feature day for the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics (ACPFG). In particular the day will highlight work at the Centre into the nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) of cereal
plants.

‘Given the environmental effects associated with production and usage of nitrogen fertilisers, and the suggestion that we may be approaching peak phosphorus, increased food production will require crops that use fertilisers more efficiently, that is, we need to increase the nutrient use efficiency of crops,’ said Dr Trevor Garnett, NUE researcher at ACPFG

Nutrient use efficiency researchers from around the world will meet on the Friday at the National Wine Centre to discuss their research and strategies for international collaboration to address this problem.

‘Currently the demand for food is close to the limits of what we can produce, but by 2050 it is suggested that we will need to increase food production by 60% according to a 2008 Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations report,’ he said.

Nitrogen (N) is one of the biggest input costs for farmers and the price is increasing because of the power used to industrially fix N from the atmosphere. Approximately 2 % of the world’s energy is used to produced N fertiliser; this causes a considerable greenhouse gas contribution.

‘Over 100 million tonnes of Nitrogen fertiliser is applied to crops each year and 60% of this on cereals,’ said Dr Garnett. ‘Given the costs and environmental effects associated with production and usage of nitrogen fertilisers, plants with increased nitrogen use efficiency are of great importance to future food security.’

Nitrogen is the fertiliser that plants require the most, but only 40-50% of the applied fertiliser is taken up by the cereal crops. The nitrogen not taken up leads to pollution of waterways and oceans, one consequence being algal blooms at river deltas causing dead zones.

Unused nitrogen fertiliser has a further environmental impact in that it is broken down in the soil by microbes and released into the atmosphere as nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas 300 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

Plants require less phosphorus than nitrogen but there is a lot less available. Current estimates are that the world will reach peak phosphorus by the middle of this century. Peak phosphorus, in the same way as peak oil, means the readily available supplies have been utilised and the cost of phosphorous fertiliser will dramatically increase.

The Friday session includes plenary speakers representing the key international groups specialising in NUE and research presentations describing key rate limiting steps in NUE that are currently being targeted to improve the NUE in crop plants.

IWPMB 2010 Website

Salt-tolerant rice offers hope for global food supply

A team of scientists from the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics, a key research partner of the Waite Research Institute at the University of Adelaide’s Waite Campus, has successfully used genetic modification (GM) to improve the salt tolerance of rice, offering hope for improved rice production around the world.

This new research into rice builds on previous work by ACPFG researchers into the salt tolerance of plants and was conducted in collaboration with scientists now based at the universities of Copenhagen, Cairo and Melbourne.

Read about this research at PLoS ONE

ACPFG Vector Magazine – Issue 11

The 11th Issue of the ACPFG Vector Magazine has been released, you can view it here. This issue contains the latest news from the ACPFG, including:

  • grants
  • news in brief
  • new faces around the ACPFG
  • the recent external review
  • colder weather and how it relates to preventing frost damage in plants
  • the new protein structure and function focus group
  • Geoff Fincher’s trip to Nigeria
  • the experiences of 2 students on the Cotutelle Program
  • the experiences of an international scholarship visitor from Iraq
  • how gene technology can be used to generate better crops
  • the opening of The Plant Accelerator
  • highlights from the Genomics Symposium
  • and more

For more news from the ACPFG please visit their website.