Utilizing Biome Makers BeCrop technology to analyze the Performance Citrus Management Program’s impact on soil microbiome

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Performance Nutrition utilized Biome Makers BeCrop® technology to analyze the impact of the Performance Nutrition Citrus Management Program on the soil microbiome and analyze the capacity of this Citrus Greening Recovery Program to interact with the natural soil microbiome and, thus, to promote soil health and sustainability in grapefruit and orange crops.

The Solution

This project utilized Biome Makers’ BeCrop® technology to analyze 72 samples with 3 replicates per time point (T1, T2, T3) from 3 geographical locations: location 1 on Grapefruit (Vero Beach, FL), location 2 on Grapefruit (Vero Beach, FL), and location 3 on Orange (Dade City, FL). Location 1: Grapefruit used NutriSmart®-B: granular soil inoculant and humate soil amendment, Location 2: Grapefruit used NutriSmart®-WSP: water-soluble yeast powder, source of humic acid and Korban® Zn: 0-0-4 + 2S and a blend of humic acids. Location 3: Orange used NutriSmart®-B: granular soil inoculant and humate soil amendment.

Bacterial biodiversity increased at T1 in locations where NutriSmart®-B was applied. Fungal biodiversity decreased at T1 or T3 in all locations. The largest impact on the soil microbiota in Location 2, Grapefruit (Vero Beach, FL) with NutriSmart®-WSP + Korban® Zn. Similar effects were seen at Location 2 at T1 and Location 1 at T2, and again for Location 2 at T2 and Location 1 at T3. It seems as if the effects of NutriSmart®-WSP are observed before the effects of NutriSmart®-B, or that Korban® Zn improves the effect. Across all locations, there were significant effects of the products used in carbon metabolism. There was an increased bioavailability of Mn in location 2 only (Nutrismart-WSP) and a decrease in abundance of fungicide biocontrol agents, potentially due to lower pathogen pressure.

Results

The results from the BeCrop® technology for this project empowered Performance Nutrition to track the effects of agricultural input performance over time. They can make data-driven improvements to products before they go to market, measure and verify the real impact of products, and monitor their product’s performances over time and in different conditions and geographic locations.