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In many parts of the world, such as India, Australia and the USA, where deficient soils have been treated with zinc fertilizers, subsequent soil testing has shown that many have an adequate zinc status for several years after treatment. This has resulted in a declining trend in the occurrence of zinc deficiency in many agricultural regions and also in a declining motivation for a number of suppliers to innovate in product research. In the meantime, high yielding crops have a greater zinc requirement than those grown less intensively and so the soils require again regular soil testing. And of course this has opened the door to new suppliers of Zinc products eager to tap this new market niche. Today more than forty manufacturers of zinc specialities are supplying straight zinc products on a global scale and many more are offering Zinc-enriched products in their catalogues. Zinc, unlike Boron, certainly isn't the largest untapped micronutrient market in the world. As emphasized in an exhaustive and remarkable report recently published by the International Zinc Association, Zinc is - and will remain for a while - the most widespread deficiency and the largest micronutrient market in the world!
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whatever the crop species' relative sensitivity to the problem. Nevertheless. maize and rice are the most sensitive with wheat being moderately sensitive. Among cereals. Where zinc is deficient. where soils are deficient in zinc. resulting in lower yields (or even crop failure) and frequently in poorer quality crop products. these physiological functions will be impaired and the health and productivity of the plants will be adversely affected. last but not least there are a number of ways to efficiently and quickly correct the deficiency when it is there or to prevent it from happening when the risk of occurrence has been properly evaluated. zinc has a number of advantages: its deficiency is easy to identify on crops. where the problem is very much widespread. Several important food crops can be seriously affected by zinc deficiency. protein NEW AG INTERNATIONAL 00 . fertility and seed production.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S ZINC! Zinc Fertilizers. Among the main micronutrients. if the zinc supply AN ESSENTIAL ELEMENT FOR CROP GROWTH Zinc is required in small but critical concentrations to allow several key plant physiological pathways to function normally. the soil & leaf analysis generally give good indications on the risk of occurrence of the deficiency and. CEREALS: THE MOST AFFECTED CROPS ON A GLOBAL SCALE Most crops in the world can develop some sort of zinc deficiency. Animals and humans also have critical zinc requirements and in areas where zinc deficiency in crops is widespread there is a high risk that the health of livestock and people will also be affected. The use of zinc salts as fertilizer was first envisaged in 1908 but it took until the early 1930's for scientists to fully recognize that zinc is necessary to plant growth. growth regulation and defense against disease. These pathways have important roles in photosynthesis and sugar formation. Is There A Difference? T he positive effect of Zinc on crop development was first discovered in 1870 by Raulin on Aspergillus Niger. synthesis.
Is there any scientific background to the success of this type of product? There are several different forms of zinc available for either foliar or soil application. EDTAzinc is very effective as a foliar treatment and is unlikely to cause scorch.g. When zinc sulphate is used as a foliar spray. 8 M ha in the Philippines and 2. It also seems that the use of Speciality Zinc oxides. where yields can be reduced by up to 40% without obvious symptoms. Hidden deficiencies. However.e. EDTA-zinc is the most widely used chelated form of zinc. is available on the website www.6 M ha is prone to zinc deficiency. Conventional plant breeders can now use the more efficient plants in breeding programmes to obtain new cultivars with improved zinc efficiency. e. DTPA-zinc is not used as a fertiliser because it is too expensive and probably more hazardous than EDTA. Nevertheless. they differ in the extent to which they can grow successfully on soils of marginal zinc status. Alloway NEW AG INTERNATIONAL . it doesn't seem that this product is widely manufactured and used. its effectiveness as a foliar treatment may be due to the fact that it doesn't cause leaf scorch.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S F O U R Q U E S T I O N S T O Prof Brian Alloway. with regard to both human toxicology and environmental risks. With regard to foliar treatments. what are the main future research requirements? You are right about the importance of zinc deficiency in cereals. very large areas of land are prone to deficiency. However. rice and maize.5 M ha in Iran. DTPA has proved to be a very effective reagent for use in soil tests to assess the available zinc status of soils. Hidden deficiencies probably account for most of the lost yield caused by zinc deficiency. but it is difficult to quantify the value of lost production and inferior crop quality that it is responsible for. however. Very often the poor yield is ascribed to other causes and it is only though the use of soil or plant analysis that the problem can be identified. 81M ha in India (49% of total). (1) Prof Alloway report “Zinc in Soils and Crop Nutrition”. Other chemicals may be incorporated into the flowable zinc oxide products to modify the rate of penetration of zinc through the cuticle. calcareous. 0. Research has shown that the percentage of water soluble zinc in a product is the main factor controlling its effectiveness for soil application. 00 Courtesy of B.zinc-crops. they are much more expensive than inorganic compounds such as zinc sulphate. is developing for foliar application in a number of situations. Prof Brian Alloway Brian Alloway is an Emeritus Prof at the University of Reading in England. However. UK Is Zinc deficiency the most widespread micronutrient deficiency in the world and can one assess the economic importance of the problem on a global scale? Zinc deficiency is certainly the most widespread micronutrient deficiency in the world. in flowable form. i. published by the International Zinc Association. A number of references tend to indicate that DTPA Zinc is the most efficient chelate under these conditions because it is the most stable.org since 1st September 2004. much of the land identified as being deficient will have been treated with zinc fertilisers and so a much smaller proportion will actually be suffering from deficiency nowadays. Cereals are the most broadly affected crops around the world. Is there any research on GMOs that would be zinc efficient? And more generally speaking. field trials need to be conducted with new zinc efficient cultivars to determine the critical soil test concentrations of zinc which will indicate when zinc fertilisers are needed. flooded and high phosphate soils) will need to be tested regularly to ensure that an adequate zinc status is maintained. in particular wheat. it is often neutralized with calcium hydroxide to minimize leaf scorch. 14 M ha in Turkey. Much work has already been done on screening cultivars of rice. I do not think that GMOs are necessary to address this problem. Do you have any explanation for such situation? Although zinc chelates can be effective for both foliar or soil application. A number of products and type of application are available to the farmers to overcome the problem. land which has been shown to be deficient (including sandy. but it is much more expensive than either zinc sulphate or zinc oxide. However. Cultivars of all species of cereals show a wide range of variation in zinc efficiency. We know that Zinc chelates are very effective for soil application in calcareous conditions. can exist in crops without the farmer suspecting them. Although zinc oxide is not as soluble as either EDTA-zinc or zinc sulphate. He now works as a consultant in soil and environmental science and is involved in projects for the International Zinc Association(1) and the European Copper Institute. Even in France. In some of the worst affected countries. wheat and maize for zinc efficiency. solubility and absorption through the leaf cuticle have to be balanced against the risk of leaf scorch from an excess of zinc ions on the leaf surface.
one finds grapes. Syria and Turkey.6-1. Nepal. Philippines. Hawai and Washington). Malawi. the rice-wheat systems is the main concern in Asia and wheat is the big problem in Australia. zinc deficiency is especially widespread in citrus. coffee and maize (Brazil) but it also affects a number of tropical crops (e.05M) HCI (0. A WORLDWIDE SPREAD PROBLEM AND THE LARGEST MICRONUTRIENT MARKET There is no such thing as a detailed world map of places where zinc deficien- cy is likely to appear on crops. Cotton is also a crop that is affected in many places where it is grown as well as linseed and some vegetables such as beans. where the problem affects millions of hectares and the USA where the deficiency is today recognised in 40 states (in particular California. alfalfa. phosphate and nitrogen applications. and of irrigation to boost yields is also an aggravating factor. In South America.also had areas Photo NAI “The addition of granulated zinc to dry blends is with zinc deficiency: Hungary. Other countries 12 in total. although such map has been drawn in a number of countries (USA. Today two different Rice Maize NEW AG INTERNATIONAL 00 . The use of new high yielding cultivars -sometimes less zinc efficient. India. Among them Australia. And most researchers and extension officers agree that zinc deficiency is probably the micronutrient deficiency having the largest impact on a number of crops in terms of yield losses. Mexico.02M) EDTA (0. climatic conditions. Among the least affected crops. common practice” Table 2: Critical Concentrations from Leaf Analysis of Crops (various sources) Crop Wheat Severity of Deficiency Acute Moderate Hidden No response to Zinc Deficiency Deficiency Critical Concentration (mg Zn/kg in dry soil) <8 8-12 12-20 >20 <1-15 <20-22 TWO MAIN TYPES OF ZINC FERTILIZERS The history of Zn fertilizers goes back to 1934 when Zinc Sulphate was fist recommanded for use in treating “white bud” in maize. In the meantime the deficiency has been reported in many other countries.0-5.1M) Critical (or Threshold) Concentrations (mg Zn/kg in dry soil) 0. etc. calcareous soils. In this last country alone.g. making zinc the largest micronutrient market in the world.0 <1. Egypt. China). Pakistan.0 status is inadequate. Tanzania and Zambia. There are however a number of recurrent factors that indicate the likely occurrence of the deficiency: soils poor in zinc (acid sandy soils that are prone to leaching). of which India. Iraq. Many countries (see map) have problems with zinc deficiency on a number of crops. Nigeria.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S Table 1: Soil Tests for Available Zinc (various sources) Soil Test Reagent DTPA (0. While in Europe and North America maize is the largest market for zinc products with a number of fruit trees and other crops also affected. the crops will be affected by deficiency. Ghana. A study of the nutrient status of soils in 30 countries was carried out by FAO between 1974 and 1982 under the Direction of Prof Sillanpää. soils poor in organic matter. Indeed the relevance of such map would be questionable. Thailand. more than 14 million hectares of arable land are zinc deficient! Other neighbouring countries in these areas are likely (or have proven in the meantime) to have similar zinc deficiency problems.0 <0. Lebanon. Ethiopia. cold and/or semi-arid climates. Ten countries had soils and crops of particularly low zinc status.5-2. Today tens of millions of hectares around the globe receive some kind of zinc dressing. asparagus and carrots.pineapple). The frequency of the occurrence of the deficiency in a given region can substantially vary from one year to the other depending on crop rotation.
In a recent survey zincdeficient soils were found in 42 out of 48 states in America. the more ZnSO4 that is formed. beans. bio-fermentation and pesticide markets. and formulation of new products for their respective areas. types of compounds -inorganic and organic compounds . The more acid that ZnO is reacted with. This has put much upward pressure on zinc sulfate prices. and the higher the water solubility of the final fertilizer material. Inc. The most deficient states were located in the Midwest region. Pasco. Soil applied zinc has been proven to be the most efficient corrective measure at a rate of 5 to 15 pounds of zinc per acre for most crops. Mexico and Peru due to their close proximity. Alternatively. it is reacted with sulfuric acid (H2SO4) to improve solubility and promote granulation. Zinc Sulfates are the most commonly used products to remedy zinc deficiencies. however. The two companies offer a complete range of products and services for the micronutrient. Courtesy of A. Zinc sulfate pricing and supply. and zinc sulfate (ZnSO4). which ranged from medium to severe. can be influenced by fertilizer demand during the fertilizer season. “The United States Agricultural industry uses approximately 14% of the overall 1. Solubility is related to the process used in fertilizer manufacturing and the primary product used as a Zn source. USA “Zinc may also be applied foliar in the form of a chelated zinc but is not as efficient or economical as zinc sulfate” Northwest Agricultural Products. ZnO is not water soluble and not an effective Zn fertilizer on alkaline soils. typically from Canada. to as low as $850/mt in 2002. head of R&D of the Plant Nutrient Enhancing Technologies group at Northwest Agricultural Products. and vegetables. Wicks cotton.are used as zinc fertilizers (see table 3). The final product will be a mixture of ZnO. Zinc deficiencies are easily corrected and zinc applications will continue to be used by American Farmers to sustain the constant increase in the demand for food world wide”. The country imports about two-thirds of its domestic needs. Among inorganic sources Zinc Sulphate still is the most commonly used source around the world. Unfortunately. Increasing emphasis on reducing zinc oxy sulfate use in fertilizers is increasing the demand for zinc sulfate and. cheap and available in both crystalline and granular form but the latter has a lower solubility. Zinc may also be applied foliar in the form of a chelated zinc but is not as efficient or economical as zinc sulfate. prices have spiraled downward from $1800/ mt in 1988. thereby. Zinc consumption has remained stagnant in the United States for the past 30 years.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S A N I N T E R V I E W W I T H Alan Wicks. sorghum. To prepare granular Zn fertilizer from ZnO. They vary considerably in their zinc content and price. wheat. It is essentially 100% soluble. fruits. Other Zn fertilizers in the market place are manufactured from industrial by-products such as zinc nitrate (widely used in France to correct Zn defficiency on maize) or zinc oxide (ZnO). tightening the supply. Zinc is the most common micronutrient deficiency in agriculture today! Its deficiency can limit yields of corn. A common nutrient that both companies offer in animal feed and crop production is zinc. The staff of both companies offers many years of field experience and dedication in the wholesale distribution. and Monterey Ag Resources work together to jointly serve the western United States.17 million metric tons of zinc consumed domestically. Fertilizers that are mixtures of ZnO and ZnSO4 are called Zn oxysulfates and most experts agree that they should be at least 50% solu- 32 NEW AG INTERNATIONAL .
have also increased in importance in the market. Organic compounds. 7H2O xZnSo4. is entirely biodegradable and suitable for both soil/root/hydroponics and leaf application. So why not using only zinc sulphate on all crops in all situations everywhere around the world? They are a number Source: Alloway & Loué. although they remain marginal at the moment. ble to ensure sufficient agronomic effectiveness. currently under registration.in calcareous soils. which in turn is more effective than other organic compounds such as lignosulfonates and polyflavonoids. 3H2O ZnS Fritted glass Zn(NH3)4SO4 Na2ZnEDTA NaZnHEDTA NaZnEDTA Zinc Content (%) 36-37 22-23 20-50 55 50-80 50-56 50 23 67 10-30 10 8-14 6-10 9-13 5-10 5-8 advantage of being less expensive than synthetic chelates but are generally less stable and restricted to foliar application. natural organic complexes. xZnO ZnSo4. Its promoters also quote it as “reasonable in price”.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S Table 3: Commonly used Zinc fertilizer materials Compound Inorganic Compounds Zinc Sulphate Monohydrate Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate Zinc Oxysulfate Basic Zinc Sulphate Zinc Oxide* Zinc Carbonate* Zinc Chloride Zinc Nitrate Sulphurous Zinc Zinc Frits Ammoniated zinc sulphate solution Organic Compounds Disodium Zinc EDTA Sodium Zinc HEDTA Sodium Zinc EDTA Zinc polyflavonoids Zinc lignosulfonates Formula ZnSO4. Martens & Westermann. a new fully soluble powder containing 10% Zinc proposed in particular by Agrex. lignosulfonates and polyflavonoids). especially on Maize. In the case of zinc. Finally. mostly manufactured by reacting zinc salts with organic by-products from paper pulp manufacture (LPCA. Some contradict eachother but it is generally admitted that for soil application -by far the most commonly used application method . based on the the new chelating agent IDHA developed by the German company Bayer. based on Mordvedt&Gilkes. Other chelates such as zinc citrate may be used here and there . in particular synthetic chelates have gained share in the market ( however not to the extent of manganese chelates to treat the Mn defficiency). New developments in the market include the IDHA Zn. 4Zn(OH)2 ZnO ZnCO3 ZnCl2 Zn(NO3)2. ANY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SOURCES? A huge number of studies have been done around the world. comparing inorganic sources between themselves or comparing inorganic sources (mainly zinc sulphate) to organic compounds (mainly zinc EDTA). H2O ZnSO4. EDTA is the most widely used source. The market will decide. chelates are more effective than zinc sulpphate. They carry the NEW AG INTERNATIONAL Document courtesy of Alloway 00 . often combined with ammonium polyphosphate as a starter (banded) fertilizer. To cut a long story short Zn-EDTA is considered to be 4-5 times more effective than Zinc Sulphate in greenhouse pot experiments (down to only 2-3 times in field experiments) but it is at the same time 5 to 10 times more expensive. Another type of inorganic complex that is used as a source of zinc is ammoniated zinc sulphate solution (10% Zn but also 10-15% N and 5% S).They are less expensive than ZnEDTA but they are also less stable. The product. and Srivastava & Gupta. *: insoluble in water.
Australia and the USA. the government should allow the major fertilizer companies to produce Zinc based fertilizers. Faced with a challenge of providing 337 million mt food grains to 1. With an exception of few. The delivered farm gate price for Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate ranges around US$ 177pmt to US$ 270 pmt while that of Zinc Sulphate Monohydrate is around US$ 560 pmt to US$ 650 pmt. zinc is available from a number of registered products: Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate (21%). The importance of Zinc and other micro nutrients in increasing food grain productivity is established beyond doubt. Zinc Sulphate Monohydrate (33%). These prices too vary every month depending on the price/ availability of Zinc ash and Sulphuric Acid. between the history of zinc deficiency. an application method where chelates and other organic compounds globally prove superior not so much in terms of zinc penetration into the leaf but rather in terms of zinc transport within the plant.5 million mt of Zinc Sulphates by 2025. The end result is sub-standard product with poor zinc content which is literally dumped into the market with conniving dealers/ retailers.4%). Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate and Monohydrate are most widely used to overcome zinc deficiency.000 tpa. zinc is very little mobile in the soil. with no agronomic or sales support. of reasons that have made alternative products increasingly popular: for example. a number of researchers and field officers rightly observe that an increased zinc concentration in the plant (which is a way to measure the agronomic effectiveness of one source as compared to the others) doesn't necessarily result in a yield increase (which is one way to measure the cost-effectiveness of a treatment)! As appears in the various interviews with people active in the market in Europe.the amplitude of its occurrence in the country. the mix “The government should allow the major fertilizer companies to produce zinc-based fertilizers” Courtesy of RNZ Group ty. Regular checks and tightened control by enforcement agencies will ensure farmer gets his value for money. hence the necessity for some crops (e. RNZ Group. With inadequate storage facilities.000 tpa while actual production is estimated around 75-80. Further new and efficient Zinc based products should be introduced in the market for different crops.0-1.2 billion Indians by year 201112. Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate literally melts away in the hot Indian summer and the farmer unknowingly carries home short weight bags. which can be very different from one place to the other. President. Present estimated capacity of Zinc Sulphates is around 170. There is room for everyone in the market! A BUNCH OF SUPPLIERS TO THE INTERNATIONAL MARKET The fact that the market is at the same time huge and open is reflected in the number and the diversity of suppliers & manufacturers 00 NEW AG INTERNATIONAL .P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S A N I N T E R V I E W W I T H Raza Soomar.Zn-EDTA (12%). India. tank mixability. These back-yard units operate only during peak season time.fruit trees) to switch to foliar spraying. the only motivation for them is to earn profits. Zincated Urea (1. about 4 months in a year. the production of both these products is restricted to small scale industry which employs small capital and semiskilled workers. This will ensure qualiThis being said. Given the serious deficiencies estimated to grow to 1.g.5%) and suspension of Zincated Phosphate (19.In India. Unfortunately. the crop and the soil pattern determines the “driving forces” in the market. the government should resolve the above issues sooner than later for a better future. India “Zinc deficiency is most commonly found in Indian soils and is estimated to be as much as 47%. phytotoxicity and leaf burn. etc. timely availability and after sales support.
P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S “Rice is one of the most affected crops here in India” Courtesy of RNZ-India of zinc products. Tigertech Zn Aton Zn. ID HA Zinc Agrimar Zinc AgroZin Zinconia. Natrel. Kelkat Zn Zinco liquido.Maximo Zn Na010 Zn. Whereas granulated zinc products are mainly Table 4: Main suppliers of Zinc Products to the International markets Company Adfert Agrex Agrimar Agrium Agrofill Agronutrition Atlantica Agricola Belco Biolchim Ciba Specialty CIFO Cosmocel Frit Industries Haifa Chemicals ITECO Leffingwell Loveland Ltus Borregaard Melspring Micromix Monterey Chemicals Nabta Chemicals Phosyn Plantin Plant Prod Plaaskem Rosier Tessenderlo Kerley Tiger Industries Tradecorp Valagro Country Emirates Germany UK USA Italy France Spain USA Italy UK Italy Mexico USA Israel Spain USA UK USA/Netherlands Netherlands UK USA China UK France Canada South Africa Belgium USA USA Spain/Portugal Italy liquids/suspensions powder/microgran granular some trademarks Adfert Zn EDTA Microfert Zn. Chelafarm Zn Note: this list is not exhaustive and it includes only companies offering straight Zinc products. Granusol. Source: Producers information and New Ag International database NEW AG INTERNATIONAL 00 . They include liquids & suspensions for soil/leaf application as well as granulated fertilizers for mixing with NPKs in dry blends for soil application and microgranulated products -mostly fully soluble with high tank mixability for dissolving in water and then foliar spray or soilapply. granoligo. Fertigro Zn MultiMicro Zn MicroD'or Zn NutriSpray Zinc Cutonic Zn Borrechel Zn Micromel Zn Sequestar Zn. Na011Zn Teprosyn Zn. A number of these and other suppliers also offer products enriched with Zinc. ZincFast Kelatex Zn. zincofol. Fixa Zn Kelik Zn. Zintrac Oliplant Zn 34 ZincMax Zinc + NZn Envirosul Zn. Tradecorp Zn Brexil Zn. More than 40 suppliers of straight zinc specialities compete on a global scale with a variety of products. organmicroZn Librel Zn Zinc L.
Today the development of zinc application in France is mainly done through the new NP Zn products. a micro-granulated product applied during sowing. a number of research programmes are being put or must be put in place. widely promoted use of tools like soil and plant analysis. Since the 1992 EU farming policy. and despite the fact that the deficiency is increasingly easier to detect thanks to the 00 NEW AG INTERNATIONAL . originally belonging to the SCPA Group. On maize or flax. the Zinc market on Maize has stabilized at around 20 % to 25 % of the area treated. Commercial Director. FURTHER RESEARCH NEEDED In view of the economic importance of the problems caused by zinc deficiency around the world. our liquid foliar STARMAX and our MICROSTAR PZ . the only way known to solve the problem was to foliarspray zinc sulphate. Zinc deficiency on Maize was the first problem that the company addressed in the Sixties. With the development offered by a restricted number of North American and European suppliers primarily for domestic consumption and closeby export markets that can be reached by truck. with special zinc granules (e.g. e. GRANOLIGO) in dry blends. We then launched our first product. It was a very convenient and innovative product made of zinc nitrate (liquid and water soluble). Zinc in France = Maize. on sandy soils. It brings at the same time preventive zinc nutrition and a starter effect. The use of Zinc helped creating the whole trace element market (Boron. Up to 40 % of the total maize area (2 million Ha) was treated every year. copper…) on others crops such as sugar beet and cereals. the use of preventive zinc treatments started to be very common practice. directly in the raw. ZINCONIA became the reference product (30 % market share) and provided the base to start accumulating our know-how. Zinc around the world and are normally. it created leaf scorch and the period to apply the product was too short for the conventional farming equipment. ZINCONIA. This solution had some drawbacks. Nowadays.rarely in short supply. our company discovered the occurrence of Zinc deficiency in the South west of France. Raw materials such as Zinc sulphate and zinc oxide are being supplied from of maize for grain and cattle feed all over the country. pioneered the launch of the speciality micronutrients market in France. For speciality crops it was more iron that played the role of market booster but zinc is also used especially on apple orchards. other specialities are offerd from every corner of the world. 10 or 12 products from a number of suppliers compete in this developing market. During the sixties.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S A N I N T E R V I E W W I T H Luc Wattelle. with the development of new maize varieties. Agronutrition (France) “Today the development of zinc application in France is mainly done through the new NP Zn products” Agronutrition. It was only curative. Courtesy of L. At this time. mainly targeting maize and vegetables”. Zinc is now used in the same way -generalised use on flax. zinc treatment is part of a complete plant nutrition programme. etc.g. the market will welcome -but this is not specific to zinc . however more on irrigated fields. From a product viewpoint. it is considered at the same level as Nitrogen or Potassium on broad acre crops.synthetic organic compounds that are more environment friendly than some synthetic chelates. with less quantity of fertilizer applied. “If I may put it this way.It was launched and recognized as the first preventive zinc product on the market. Wattelle was integrated to nutrition programmes in many others ways: by incorporation in commodity NPK fertilisers. In the meantime.
but not least evaluate approaches to fortifying the zinc content of staple foods in a form that is as bio-available as possible to the consumers. the seed dressing market has seen considerable growth over the last years.P R O D U C T S & T R E N D S A N I N T E R V I E W W I T H Quenten Knight.fertilizing techniques for subsoils in dry regions (e. standardizing soiltest methods and the related critical values for all major crops. Wool. The future growth is still in the foliar market with a small developing market where farmers are banding liquid UAN below the seed at sowing. Agronomist. Western Australia Landmark is an Australian company owned by the Australian Wheat Board that operates from over 400 locations Australia wide. Fertiliser. Landmark. “Generally Australian soils are naturally infertile. Some farmers are using Zinc seed dressings such as Phosyn Teprosyn Zinc (60% Zn) which is applied to the seed prior to sowing. reassess the suitability of field-based biochemical test kits for checking the zinc status of crops without relying on lab analysis. Traditionally most of the Zinc supplied to crops was From an agronomic viewpoint. Australia). Real Estate and Grain Marketing to name a few. and a very small portion of Chelated Zinc products . nutritionists. those have been summarized by Prof Alloway (see interview) in his report published by the International Zinc Association: the continuation of the screening of cultivars of major crop species for zinc efficient strains to be used in plant breeding (this would enable crop genotypes to be matched to soils and reduce the requirement for zinc applications). Landmark supplies a diverse range of products and services to the Australian farmer. ranging from Farm Merchandise. Agronomy. and last “The future growth of zinc applications Courtesy of Landmark in Australia is still in the foliar Speciality Zinc oxide products are the products of choice due to their compatability with a wide range of post emergent herbicides that are applied tank mixed with the Zinc sprayed onto crops. the foliar market is dominated by Zinc Sulphate (17-23% Zn) and Zinc oxide (65-70% Zn). Growing crops and pastures successfully would be near on impossible without the addition of all essential nutrients via fertiliser especially Zinc. Once again the industry should join forces with academic research! ■ market. Presently most farmers are still applying maintenance levels of Zinc at sowing via DAP and MAP based fertilisers as well as supplementing this with other methods of applying Zinc. applied at sowing with either DAP or MAP based fertiliser drilled with the seed providing a maintenance rate of Zinc (802000gm/ha) for the forecast crop yield. some farmers see this as an opportunity to tank mix either Zinc Oxide or Sulphate with the UAN and band both beneath the seed at sowing. The current major growth area of the Australian market is the foliar market where Zinc is sprayed post emergent onto young crops. this is proving successful in Zinc responsive soils. Increased use of Zinc could also potentially grow in crops like Canola and Pulse crops. developing -if possible. plant breeders.g.” NEW AG INTERNATIONAL 00 . elucidation of the physiological mechanisms involved in the zinc-phosphorus interactions. Insurance. Livestock trading. This is certainly the most challenging research as it will have to involve a number of scientists from different fields: soil experts. Landmark is a large supplier of Zinc to the Australian market in various forms to meet individual farmer requirements. Most Australian farmers assess their need for Zinc by undertaking soil analysis before sowing or by plant tissue analysis early in the crops growth. The future for Zinc use in Australia will continue to increase as we grow higher yielding crops. Finance.