SGS Seed and Crop News: October 2020
In this edition of SGS Seed and Crop Canada News:
- Fungal Scan Quantification to Understand Seed Pathogens
- Scoring Corn Silage to Determine Digestibility
- Efficient ISTA Seed Quality Testing for Canadian Exporters
- Lime Index Value for Soil pH Amendment
FUNGAL SCAN QUANTIFICATION TO UNDERSTAND SEED PATHOGENS
Seed is a storybook revealing last season’s plant disease presence, weather patterns during harvest and seed storage conditions. Our cereal Fungal Scan is a comprehensive analysis of the 13 most common seed fungal pathogens in Canada. Keen attention is placed on diseases that impact seedling health, reduce plant density and minimize grain quality, such as Fusarium species and root rot. We also include storage mold in the Fungal Scan, which are often triggered by less than ideal storage parameters such as high moisture and heat. Within 1 week, our disease lab in SGS Sherwood Park will incubate seeds on ideally designed growing media, then quantify the fungal pathogens present. Understanding these test results will give clients insight to evaluate seed treatment, adjust storage, calculate plant density targets and ultimately choose seed for usage.
SCORING CORN SILAGE TO DETERMINE DIGESTIBILITY
Processing of corn silage has become a more common practice as it can improve fermentation. This increases the starches and sugars available to the silage microorganisms, which reduces dry matter losses in the silo and helps to break up corn cobs, improving fibre consumption.
Although mechanical processing has improved over the past few years, it is still common to have very poorly processed corn. How well the kernel is processed is directly related to how well starch will digest in lactating dairy cows. Too fine will affect rumen health and lactating performance, too coarse will lack any benefit.
SGS offers a unique test Corn Silage Processing Score, to evaluate kernel processing and determine the state of processing in stored corn silage. This test involves shaking silage over a series of sieves and measuring the percent of starch passing through a 4.75-mm sieve. Turn-around time for this test is 2 days and can be added to any of our packages.
EFFICIENT ISTA SEED QUALITY TESTING FOR CANADIAN EXPORTERS
Seed shipments across the Canadian borders must be thorough and prompt to meet strict container transportation plans. SGS Sherwood Park has one of the most comprehensive testing offers, issuing Blue International Certificates (BIC), Orange International Certificates (OIC) and EU Grade Reports. Our lab not only meets routine testing, such as germination, percent pure seed and other seed determination, but we have expanded our ISTA certification to tetrazolium, seed size and moisture analytics. We understand the complexity of international shipments, the need for specialized reporting and speed of certificate issuance.
LIME INDEX VALUE FOR SOIL PH AMENDMENT
Not all agricultural limes are equal, and the effectiveness varies by particle size and content of calcium and magnesium. If your soil test shows lime is required to raise pH, testing your lime product will show if the rate needs to be adjusted based on the resultant Ag Lime Index value. A soil test also determines whether calcitic or dolomitic lime would be most beneficial.