SUSFERT – Developing multifunctional fertilisers for phosphorus and iron supply

CHALLENGE

Agriculture depends heavily on the use of non-renewable, resource-intense fertilisers to meet the ever rising demand for food and feed. The major fertiliser component phosphorus is mined and has been identified as a critical resource with 90% being imported into the EU. At the same time, there is a huge loss of nutrients from fertilisers in agriculture because they are often not available at the right amounts and/or at the right time to optimise plant growth.

SOLUTION

SUSFERT develops more sustainable, multifunctional fertilisers for phosphorus and iron supply fitting into existing production processes and EU agricultural practice. It combines bio-based and biodegradable coatings for controlled release, probiotics to increase nutrient availability and the renewable phosphorous source struvite. SUSFERT demonstrates fertiliser efficacy for major crops, evaluates the economic potential and sustainability of the tested products, ensures regulatory compliance and finally prepares market entry.

IMPACTS

The main expected impacts of SUSFERT are:
• Decrease dependency on mined phosphate rock by 40%
• Strengthen the circular economy by valorising waste- and by-products from wastewater treatment, bioethanol production and pulp and paper
• Reduce soil and water contamination by developing at least 4 novel fertiliser products
• Strengthen rural areas by establishing local value chains and feedstock sourcing

Development of all components and compound fertilisers is market driven, ensuring quick uptake in organic and conventional agriculture

Approach & Work Packages

Objectives & Expected Results

SUSFERT News

ABOUT SUSFERT
OBJECTIVES
WORK PACKAGES
PRESS & MEDIA
EVENTS

SUSFERT in the news

Consortium meets in Graz, Austria

The SUSFERT Consortium met recently in the Styrian capital of Graz, Austria. The project is entering the final stage of its work that will assess two additional growing seasons to validate field trial results.

SUSFERT, BIOSCHAMP support soil strategy at Loops 2.0 Green Week

Register and join the VELTHA EU Green Week Loops 2.0 webinar to find out how bio-based fertilisers and peat-free biostimulant casings reduce dependency on pesticides and petrochemical products that contribute to EU Soil Strategy targets.

@CBE_JU EUR120 million call for proposals launched. https://t.co/xfipM4jhaE
h J R
@SUSFERT_BBI
SUSFERT aims to find #environmentally #sustainable solutions as alternatives to #petrochemical coatings using #lignin based bioactive coatings as #soil improvers. Funded by the @CBE_JU and @HorizonEU. The list below reads like the Who's Who of #Big #Oil. https://t.co/gms2r7z30t https://t.co/Ukc5TX7v6F
h J R
@SUSFERT_BBI
👀📽️ BIOSCHAMP is validating #sustainable #peat free #biostimulant casing solutions for #mushroom industry to tackle profitability, #climate challenges, and reduce #fungicidal #pesticidal use by 90 per cent. #Mining #peat for #agriculture is #unsustainable. Peat stores #CO2. https://t.co/voEDeowehl
h J R
@SUSFERT_BBI
@FertilizersEuro: The EU #fertilizer industry welcomes the objective of an integrated approach to nutrient management but regrets how the @EUCouncil conclusions fail to understand that the objective of #foodsecurity cannot be achieved without mineral fertilizers. PR: https://t.co/iTTP5oM2wS https://t.co/A4foifvi7I
h J R
@SUSFERT_BBI

Testimonials on sustainable economy

The partner institutions understood from the very beginning what was important for the economy and for the future of Europe.

The bioeconomy holds some of the answers to the economic challenges thrown up by mitigating climate change while maintaining growth and societal wellbeing. (from the scientific article “The bioeconomy, the challenge of the century for policy makers” in “New Biotechnology”, Vol. 40A, 11-19)

The Bioeconomy holds enormous potential for growth and job creation and it will play a major role in the creation of Europe’s new smart and resource-efficient economy.

The bioeconomy is a very important subject that requires EU-wide action and it is now stated explicitly as part of the 9 EU objectives.

SUSFERT in a nutshell

The SUSFERT consortium

Fact box

Title: Sustainable multifunctional fertiliser – combining bio-coatings, probiotics and struvite for phosphorus and iron supply
Start: 1st May 2018
Duration: 5 years
Keywords: fertiliser, sustainability, agriculture, plant nutrition, phosphorus, iron, coating, probiotics, struvite
Budget: € 9.4 Million
BBI-JU funding: € 6.6 Million

Project partners

Coordination: RTDS Group, AT
Research partners: Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT): Scientific coordination, AT | University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU), AT | University of Antwerp, BE
SMEs: Acies Bio, SI | ABiTEP, DE
Industry:  Agrana Research & Innovation Center (ARIC), AT | AGRANA Stärke, AT | AgroInnovation International (Roullier), FR | Timac Agro Düngemittel, AT | Sappi, NL/AT

Acknowledgements

This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI-JU) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No. 792021.