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Healthy seeds -- treated environmentally friendly
Date:2/5/2013

thod. In 2002, they built a mobile demonstration unit which they use to provide test treatments all across Germany. However, even though the EPPO (European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization) recommends the process for conventional as well as for ecological farming, the technology has been unable to significantly penetrate the market and has not progressed beyond demonstration status. According to Rgner, one of the reasons, among others, for the lack of economic success is said to be the farmers, who can be convinced only if good results have occurred over many years, in conjunction with the recommendations of the supplier of their seeds or specialist advisor, but who rarely would take new ideas by scientists, who are not working in their field, seriously.

Now the researchers are working with the company Nordkorn Saaten GmbH. In 2010, Nordkorn had them demonstrate the process for the first time using the mobile demonstrator a truck on which the unit is mounted directly on site at their headquarters in Gstrow, Germany. The seed producer was impressed as the prototype ran for hundreds of hours with a throughput of up to 30 tonnes per hour the durability of the technology had inspired his confidence. In the meantime Nordkorn has bought the pilot plant, together with the long-standing seed partner company of the FEP, BayWa AG, and has commissioned the FEP with the building a second, custom-fit unit. This unique system is to start operations in Gstrow in late June 2013. Together with BayWa and Nordkorn as well as a plant manufacturer, the further development of the unit has also been planned. Among other things, the technology should become more affordable and more compact. The scientists and their partners are currently looking for project sponsors.

The scientists from the FEP are confident that, in the long term, the treatment with electrons will prove to be a success story. There is some support for this: Starting in 2015, farmers
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Contact: Frank-Holm Rgner
frank-holm.roegner@fep.fraunhofer.de
49-351-258-6242
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

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