Software to improve sustainability in horticultural, grape and wine-growing, and sugar beet production
The Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development Neiker-Tecnalia, the public body that reports to the Sub-Ministry for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Policy of the Government of the Basque Autonomous Community (region), in coordination with the consulting firms HAZI Fundazioa (rural, shoreline and food development) and IK Ingeniería (ecodesign and environmental innovation in products and services), has developed software for horticultural, grape and wine-growing, and sugar beet production that allows the life-cycle of the products and their carbon and water footprint, among other things, to be analysed.Its use will contribute towards improving the sustainability of the agricultural and agri-food sector and well as reducing the environmental impact of production to a minimum
To cut down on using plant protection products in viticulture is the goal of a project coordinated by the Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development (NEIKER-Tecnalia) and to be implemented over the next three years. The aim of the initiative is to show that it is possible to reduce the frequency and intensity of applications of plant protection treatment for fungal diseases such as mildew and oidium, two of the main pathologies affecting vineyards.
Technicians of the Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER-Tecnalia have in recent days been felling trees to simulate the effect of the wind in mountains in the Bizkaia locality of Artzentales. Forestry experts of the French Institute for Agricultural Research INRA together with technicians from NEIKER-Tecnalia and the Chartered Provincial Council of Bizkaia felled radiata pine specimens of different ages in order to find out their resistance to gales and observe the force the wind needs to exert to blow down these trees in the particular conditions of the Basque Country.
Neiker-Tecnalia and the Black Truffle Association of Alava are promoting the cultivation of this prized fungus and seeking to improve its quality
The Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development Neiker-Tecnalia and the Black Truffle Association of Alava are jointly running the ECOTRUF project, designed to promote the cultivation of the black truffle (Tuber melanosporum) and improve its quality. The cultivation of this fungus, greatly valued by top gourmets, has a great potential in rural and forestry development in the province of Alava, and constitutes an excellent complementary activity to upgrade and diversify traditional agricultural and forestry holdings.
The black truffle is in great demand in the sphere of haute cuisine owing to its exceptional organoleptic properties. To obtain the best truffles, they need to be cultivated using higher quality mycorrhizal plants –characterised by a symbiotic relationship between the plant and the fungus producing the truffles–. In this aspect, Neiker-Tecnalia is collaborating with the Forestry Technology Centre of Catalonia with the aim of monitoring the quality of the mycorrhizal plants that Alavese truffle producers use on their holdings.