What is the project about?

Reducing the use of water and fertilizer in European horticulture, by means of innovative plant sensors a nd commercially available (seaweed based) biostimulants.

Why is this important? 

With the expected future freshwater shortages as well as the ecological debate about the negative impact of excess fertilizers on soil; a significant reduction in the amount of water and fertilizer is required. Biostimulants have shown to have a positive impact on these aspects and if therefore of interest for the sector, including biostimulants based on seaweed. The scope of this European project can have a large impact on healthier soils and plants with reduced water usage.   

What were the objectives? 

  • To reduce water input in horticultural crops by 20%  
  • To reduce fertilizer input in horticultural crops by 10%  
  • To develop a protocol for policy makers to measure the impact of biostimulants on fertilizer and water use efficiency of plants 
  • To elaborate a market study, calculating the economic potential of seaweed-based biostimulants for seaweed-producing companies in the region 

What did we do in this project? 

North Sea Farmers lead the market study to elaborate on the economic potential of seaweed-based biostimulants. Also, we are concerned with translating research outcomes into actual implementation by (and with) entrepreneurs. 

What are the results?

Who else were involved? 

Proeftuin Zwaagdijk (NL), PCS (NL), UGent (BE), NIAB EMR (UK), Dove Associates (UK), Pôle Légumes Région Nord (FR), Yncréa Hauts de France, établissement ISA Lille (FR) 

Finance: €3.2 million for 4 years 
Support:  Europese Unie | Europees Fonds voor Regionale Ontwikkeling (EFRO)
Partners: 8 organizations from 3 different  EU countries  
Time: 01/08/2017  - 31/07/2021 
Contact: Eef brouwers


Photo header: Proeftuin Zwaagdijk