Against the grain: Soil constraints holding back Australian wheat

phys.org | 10/29/2018 | Staff
TimHyuga (Posted by) Level 3
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A model developed by researchers at The University of Queensland could address soil problems that cost Australia's wheat producers almost $2 billion a year.

Dr. Yash Dang, from UQ's School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, said the model measured the economic impact of soil problems and could help guide investment decisions on remediation and minimise productivity losses.

Soil - Sodicity - Sodium - Soil - Salinity

"Soil sodicity (too much sodium in the soil), salinity, acidity and alkalinity and compaction significantly affect grain production in Australia," he said.

"Each soil constraint has a different cause – with different treatment options – meaning that the management of each issue has different economic costs and opportunities."

Project - Data - Sources - Yield - Data

The project used data from sources, including yield data based on previous work by CSIRO, ABS and analysis of remote sensing imagery, soil data from the National Soil Site Collation and climate data from the Scientific Information for Land Owners database.

Dr. Thilak Mallawaarachchi, from UQ's School of Economics, said the team managed to isolate the real costs of some of the country's worst soil issues for wheat production.

Results - Impact - Soil - Sodicity - Cent

"The results underlined the large impact of soil sodicity, affecting 68 per cent of Australia's wheat-cropping land and costing farmers...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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