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Fertilizer research center an Australian first
Date:2/5/2008

Farmers throughout the world stand to benefit from a new research centre the first of its kind in Australia that aims to develop more advanced fertilizers for agricultural use.

The $5 million Mosaic Fertilizer Technology Research Centre, to be based at the University of Adelaide's Waite Campus, brings together world-leading scientists and facilities.

The new centre has been established by the University of Adelaide in a joint commercial venture with one of the worlds largest fertilizer companies, the United States-based Mosaic Fertilizer LLC.

The Mosaic Fertilizer Technology Research Centre will develop and evaluate more efficient fertilizer products that will be marketed around the world. These new products will be more effective in delivering nutrition to plants. This will enable farmers to more efficiently produce higher yields in crops to meet ever-increasing demand.

The new centre builds on an existing relationship between the University and Mosaic. Mosaic has previously obtained an option to commercialize two fertilizer technologies developed jointly by the University and CSIRO Land and Water, emerging from the research of Professor Mike McLaughlin, Dr Sam Stacey and the University/CSIRO research team.

Professor McLaughlin (Professorial Research Fellow) and Dr Stacey (Senior Research Fellow) both with the Universitys School of Earth & Environmental Sciences will lead the work of the Mosaic Fertilizer Technology Research Centre.

Under an agreement with the Universitys commercial development company, Adelaide Research & Innovation (ARI) Pty Ltd, Mosaic will fund research at the new centre in return for commercialization rights and a share of the intellectual property.

"This is a unique opportunity to collaborate with a research group that is recognised internationally for the quality of its work on fertilizer technology and techniques," says the Managing Director of Mosaic International Australia Pty Ltd, Mr Peter Cameron.

"Through this research centre at the University of Adelaide, Mosaic's global operations will have access to world-leading expertise and facilities in the Asia-Pacific region. This will expand and enhance Mosaics capabilities in new product development and evaluation.

"The research group's innovation will play an important role in helping to provide leading-edge products to agricultural customers across the world."

Professor McLaughlin says the new research centre will enable the University of Adelaide to expand its current research in this area, and to develop new techniques for fertilizer formulation and evaluation.

"As well as providing research to underpin the development of new fertilizer technologies, a major part of the centre's role will be to contribute to the evaluation of Mosaic's products under laboratory and field conditions, both here in Australia and overseas," Professor McLaughlin says.

"The close relationship with Mosaic will provide us with a clearly defined pathway for our research outcomes to benefit agriculture."


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Contact: Professor Mike McLaughlin
michael.mclaughlin@adelaide.edu.au
61-883-038-433
University of Adelaide
Source:Eurekalert

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