Fertigation – a challenge in organic food production

PhD defence, Thursday 11 May 2017. Bhaniswor Pokhrel

2017.05.11 | Steffi Hjerrild Iversen

Bhaniswor Pokhrel

Production and consumption of organic food is on the rise globally, however, the productivity of organic farming is considerably lower than that of conventional farming. A key factor behind the lower productivity is suboptimal nutrient management resulting from poor synchronization between crop nutrient demand and nutrient release from organic fertilizers. This affects the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of the root zone environment, and thus plant growth and productivity.

During his PhD studies, Bhaniswor Pokhrel has studied the effect of organic fertigation on growth medium properties, plant properties including photosynthesis and carbohydrate content and biomass yield of greenhouse crops. The study demonstrated that, by mixing several organic fertilizers based on their nutrient concentrations and compositions, yields comparable to a conventional system can be achieved with organic fertigation.

The new research findings contribute to clarifying factors responsible for yield differences when supplying different market available and new liquid organic fertilizers (prepared during PhD project by project partners). The results contribute to a better understanding of how liquid organic fertilizers affect growth medium pH, electrical conductivity and nutrient composition and consequently crop yield and quality. Moreover, the new research findings provide valuable information to producers of organic high-value crops and producers of organic fertilizer.

The PhD degree was completed at the Department of Food Science, Science and Technology, Aarhus University.

This résumé was prepared by the PhD student.

Time: Thursday 11 May 2017at 11.00
 Kirstinebjergvej 10, Aarslev, Department of Food Science, Aarhus University
Title of dissertation:
Fertigation – a challenge in organic food production
Contact information:
 Bhaniswor Pokhrel, bhaniswor.pokhrel@food.au.dk, Mobile: +45 27595642
Members of the assessment committee:

Professor Lars Stoumann Jensen, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences Copenhagen University, Denmark
Associate Professor Birgitta Båth, Department of Ecology and Crop Production Sciences, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Associate Professor Merete Edelenbos (chair), Department of Food Science, Aarhus University Denmark
Main supervisor:

Senior Scientist Karen Koefoed Petersen, Department of Food Science, Aarhus University

Senior Scientist Jørn Nygaard Sørensen, Department of Food Science, Aarhus University
Associate Professor Hanne Lakkenborg Kristensen, Department of Food Science, Aarhus University
 The PhD dissertation will be defended in English

The defence is public.
The dissertation is available for reading at the Graduate School of Science and Technology/GSST, Ny Munkegade 120, building 1520, rooms 128-134, 8000 Aarhus C.

PhD defence
Comments on content: 
Revised 17.05.2018