On August 28, 2013 Field Day on technology of vegetables cultivation was held at the Educational, Scientific and Practical Center of Mykolayiv NAU together with the "S-Rostok company" and with participation of Mykola Kruglov, the Head of Mykolayiv Regional State Administration.
Genius lies in simplicity, as well as the Mykolayiv NAU and the "S-Rostok" company's idea to combine efforts of university science, agrarian education and business in order to realize the common pilot project. The point is Ц the creation of experimental demonstration field with nearly 150 new breeds and hybrids of vegetable crops of the best-known world producers.
The world famous companies in vegetable seed business from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Japan, the USA, Israel, and the Netherlands (16 countries in total) participated in the event.
On the demonstration field, located in the village Senchine, Mykolayiv region, guests of event had the opportunity to learn more about new technics of modern vegetable growing and see new breeds and hybrids of onion, tomatoes, sweet pepper, table beet, carrot and cabbage, presented by well-known world producers: CLAUSE, BAYER, NUNHEMS, Nickerson Ц Zwaan, Agri Saaten, SAKATA, Enza Zaden, ESASEM, Bejo, Tazier, KR, FS, Hazera Genetics, Seminis.
The Field Day was opened by the rector of Mykolayiv National Agrarian University professor Dr. Vyacheslav Shebanin.
Dr. Shebanin sincerely thanked to participated representatives of Ukrainian and worlds' companies and leading manufacturers of vegetable products for given possibility to learn more about modern state and further development of vegetable breeding.
He also expressed appreciation to reliable partners of Mykolayiv NAU Ц company "S-Rostok" for effective co-operation and assistance in organization of the Demonstration Field. A company "S-Rostok" is one of the most modern and dynamically developing enterprises, specializing on growing, storage and realization of vegetable crops.
Well-known companies presented their products on the Field Day. These companies provide vegetable-growers with drip irrigation, mineral amendment and microfertilizers, with chemical and biological crop-protection agents. There are such companies: LLC "Biozahyst", public joint-stock company "Agrimatko", LLC "Terra Tarsa Ukraine", trading company "Agrotek", Private Company "Skhid", LLC "Khimagromarketing", LLC "Ukrdryfood", LLC "Syngenta", LLC "Bejo Ukraine", LLC "Buyer", LLC "Vladam-Yug", LLC "Irrigator Ukraine", LLC "Nickerson-Zwaan Ukraine", LTD. "Pivden' Agrokhim", LLC "Rijk Zwaan Ukraine", LLC "Rosko Trade", Private Company "SV Impex", LLC "Green Team", "VPK-јGRO", "≈vrika".
Also Mykola Kruglov, governor and Vitaliy Travyanko, director of Agroindustrial Development Department of Mykolaiv Regional State Administration took part in the event. They actively support all initiatives of Mykolayiv NAU in agrarian science and production.
The Head of Mykolayiv Regional State Administration emphasized the importance of this event. He said: "It is very good that the representatives of science and leading companies in vegetable production gathered together. Especially we are pleased with correct relationship between science, production and business. Business contacted with science. It is important because the majority of businessmen did not have agronomical education when they launched a business. Nowadays businessmen speak about need to interact with science in order to have good results. I think that finally it will positively influence on land capability".
Close cooperation of Mykolayiv NAU with farms provides exceptional opportunities for university graduates, because all the work on planting, growing seedlings, care and harvest is performed by university students, so that they gain valuable practical experience.
Nowadays we have talented young people, who will already have 4 to 5 years of experience after graduation.
But less words, more action. Immediately after the official opening the demonstration of the experimental field had begun. Quests were expected by representatives of the seeds producing companies, who did short presentations of vegetable varieties and answered the participants' questions. Representatives of agricultural enterprises of Mykolayiv Region had a unique opportunity to see the real result on the field firsthand so they could compare the competitive quality seeds and get advice from the scientists of Mykolayiv National Agrarian University.
As part of the Field Day there was an exhibition of agricultural machinery, provided by the company "Agrymatko Ц Ukraine".
For University Field Day is a great opportunity to combine science, educational process and practical training. For scientists and post-graduate students Ц it is an opportunity to promote their own developments in the agricultural chemistry, soil science and agriculture. For manufacturers it is a unique opportunity to compare their own results with others' as well as to learn about global developments in this area.
September 10, 2013 at the Regional Research and Training Center of Mykolayiv NAU Field Day on the technology of cultivation of sorghum was held.
The event was attended by the regional administration, representatives of the leading companies in the production and sale of seeds of sorghum from the USA, France, India, Russia, Hungary, Moldova, as well as national sorghum breeding centers and producers from 10 regions of Ukraine and Crimea.
Participants had the opportunity to compare the available varieties and hybrids with modern achievements. At the demonstration fields 180 undergraduate and graduate students of the University had their practical tasks and experiments with sorghum. Each of the varieties was assigned to a student who was leading it from sowing to harvesting.
According to Ukrainian and foreign experts, a collection of nearly 100 varieties and hybrids of sorghum (broomcorn, sugar sorghum, sudanese sorghum) is the best in Ukraine.
Mykolayiv NAU has an industry field of sorghum besides the research fields. After visiting the demonstration field, participants took part in the Round table discussion "Sorghum is the culture of great opportunities". Representatives of foreign companies, breeders and all participants expressed a unanimous desire to develop and improve international cooperation. It was planned to transform the Demonstration fields into the Research and Production training ground next year, where they are going to practice sophisticated technology of cultivation, protection and harvesting vegetables and sorghum.
Taking into account the importance and value of information for attraction of the potential buyers and partners, we suggest you also use our possibilities for this purpose. NNAU already has experience of such events, which can become a launching pad for further development and the finding a new directions for business.
We can provide space for the event (including cropland, advertising space, modern rooms for the final conference), the target audience (farmers, would-be entrepreneurs, representatives of regional and local authorities, students etc.), scientific and information support.
1320 hectares of arable land make up 16 experimental fields with variable land composition and terrain features. It allows us to recreate any conditions that may occur within our climatic region.
Scientists from our faculties of agronomy and biotechnology can conduct research and accurately gather scientific data, providing you with necessary information for your R&D and marketing departments. We can perform the soil analysis, weather and climatic conditions analysis, plant analysis, phytosanitary analysis, and productivity analysis.
Basically, we offer you a way to outsource some of your research and development tasks while increasing the depth and the scope of the research by using our research facilities.
You certainly know that southern oblasts of Ukraine produce a lot of vegetables. But let us provide you with recent information and brief analysis. 9 oblasts of Ukraine, which are located in the same agro-climatic zone, steppe, produce over 4 million metric tons of vegetables yearly on fields with the total area of over 2200 square kilometers (please see Table 1).
Table 1: Field vegetables production in Ukrainian steppe agro-climatic zone
|Oblast||Production volume, 1000 metric tons||Cultivated area, square kilometers
|Total for Ukrainian steppe||4286||2287
Source: State Statistics Service of Ukraine.
With big sector output comes big demand for input. Our region needs better seeds combined with better agrochemicals to cheaply produce more vegetables on our great and fertile agricultural land. This poses a challenge for biotechnology companies to provide inputs that are better fitted for our agro-climatic region. In order to meet this challenge, several obvious issues should be considered.
The demand for input is growing rapidly along with production of vegetables (please see Figure 1).
Figure 1. Upward trend in field vegetable production: Mykolaivska oblast
In Mykolaivska oblast the production of field vegetables tripled over the past decade and the trend may very well continue. The developed European nations are continuously increasing the production of crops that are used for biofuel on the quest to increase the share of renewable energy in their economies. This will inevitably shift some of the more labor intensive vegetable production to nearby developing economies, including Ukraine. Therefore the market for quality seeds and agrochemicals will continue to expand.
However, the competition on the Ukrainian market for biotechnology companies is also getting tougher. Among the biotechnology companies that operate in Ukraine are: Monsanto Co., NPZ-Lembke, Groupe Limagrain, Syngenta AG, Saaten-Union, Rijk Zwaan, RAGT Seeds, Du Pont Pioneer, Euralis Semences, KWS SAAT AG, Advanta India Ltd., Bayer AG, Caussade Semences, Dieckmann Seeds, Maisadour Semences, and others (please see figure 2).
Therefore the quality of agricultural inputs, which a biotechnology company offers to the market, must also increase for the company to retain the desired market share, or for new companies to increase their market share.
Figure 2. Figurative illustration of competition for the Ukrainian market
Agro-climatic zone of Ukrainian steppe has its own specific climate conditions. It is very difficult to develop optimal seeds for a specific climate without experimental testing. You have to account for multiple factors: temperature fluctuations, precipitations, winds, pests, soil chemistry, as well as catastrophic events, such as droughts and floods. Rapidly accelerating climate change may render previously developed products obsolete. Lastly, is quite hard to promote a product without having accurate quantitative information about its prospective use. For all of the above problems our university can provide a solution.
1320 hectares of arable land make up 16 experimental fields with variable land composition and terrain features. It allows us to recreate any conditions that may occur within our climatic region (please see Figures 3 and 4).
Figure 3. Pictures of irrigation systems in possession of our university
Figure 4. Experimental fields of MNAU (satellite view by Google Maps), total area: 1320 ha
Our soil chemistry laboratory takes measurements of soil fertility parameters, performs soil analysis on the newest analytical equipment in accordance with ISO international standards. All of the parameters including nutrients, humus content, acidity, alkalinity, salinity, macro and microstructure of soils can be controlled for during research, and some of them can be altered using fertilizers.
Soil analysis includes measuring macro and micronutrient content and physical properties of soil: aggregate composition, bulk density, and permeability. Macronutrient content analysis includes measuring the amount of nitrate-nitrogen, ammonium nitrogen, mobile phosphorus, and mobile potassium. Micronutrients that we can measure are ¬, Mn, Zn, Cu, Co, and Fe.
Soil chemistry laboratory uses informational technology advances in soil science. Each part of the field is tied to a single registry by coordinates, obtained by GPS. It allows our scientists to keep track of nutrients in soil over time and space.
Chemical research reveals differences in the spatial distributions of fertility within each field. Our researchers can then calculate how much of which fertilizer is required to achieve a desired level of fertility on each part of the field, if necessary.
Figure 5 shows a map of nitrogen content for one of our experimental fields. Nitrogen content is calculated for every hectare of 110 hectare field.
Figure 5. Map of nitrogen content for Field 9 of MNAU experimental fields
Water regime can considerably alter the outcome of the research. So can droughts, which are common in Ukrainian steppes. Therefore it is necessary to monitor the weather and water consumption of plants throughout the entire research process. We have personnel and tools to control for all weather events.
Throughout the research, our scientists can perform necessary analysis of plants at different phases of growth. It will reveal specific weaknesses and strengths of analyzed types of plants in our climate.
We can measure the effect of pests and various pathogens on plants as well as efficiency of pesticides.
Finally, we can precisely and quantitatively measure productivity of plants. Number of fruits on a plant, their weight, as well as the yield from 1 hectare can be measured and compared across a variety of plants.
There are several ways we can present the research data: either transfer it to your company confidentially, or officially publish it for the purpose of disseminating the results to your target consumers, while taking measures to prevent bias in results (please see Figure 6.) In the latter case our peer reviewed journal can be used or we can publish a separate booklet or journal. The mix of two approaches, where some data are kept private while the other data are disseminated to the target consumers, is also an option.
Figure 6. The cover of our journal
We can use the base of our university to help you promote your products by disseminating our research results. Publicly held field days, product exhibitions, seminars, and other events and activities that regularly take place in our university are good options to choose from. Figure 7 shows pictures of some of such activities.
Figure 7. One of our exhibitions and field days (left and right) and a conference (middle)
Mykolayiv national agrarian university has 3 colleges in 3 different locations of Mykolayiv oblast as shown on Figure 8. The proposed events can be held at multiple locations, insuring that the information finds the target consumer across the entire oblast.
Figure 8. Locations of Mykolayiv National Agrarian University colleges
We are happy to answer any questions you might have about our propositions and hope for mutually beneficial cooperation between our organizations.
Senior Program Officer
Mykolayiv National Agrarian University
Tel. / Fax: +38 0512 582959
E-mail: karbashevsky [at] mnau.edu.ua