There are so many products on the market making all sorts of bold promises about what they’ll do for your soil. In the face of such choice, it can be hard to figure out which one is right for you. Knowing the backstory of how a product was developed is a great way to determine whether you agree with the company’s practices, whether the product has undergone enough testing and whether it’s likely to really do what it claims to.
After discovering that Superior Fertilisers had joined forces with EcoGrowth, we decided to dig into their ‘eco friendly’ claims and find out exactly what they’re up to. According to EcoGrowth sales and technical officer, Scott Langton, the companies have come together to further their shared ambition of creating environmentally friendly products for farmers that work better than their chemical counterparts.
Their latest product, which they announced at the 2017 Toowoomba Farm Fest, is called GranU Carb. According to Scott, GranU Carb was formulated to help growers who are struggling to keep their soil carbon at workable levels for their crops.
The product has gone through extensive rounds of testing and the EcoGrowth/Superior Fertilisers team refused to consider releasing it to farmers until it was completely and consistently stable in all applications. GranU Carb has come a long way from the early days when their experiments nearly set a lab on fire (the things ag scientists do for us). The end result is a form of carbon distribution that is broken down easily by the soil biome.
“It adds a food source to the soil and increases the total biology in the ground. For every acre of land, there’s 750kg of biological life in the top six inches of soil.”
That’s a cow’s worth of living organisms per acre. We think about feeding the plants on top of the ground but it’s easy to forget about all the biology in the ground that interacts with the plants and needs to be healthy for the crop to prosper.
“We’re adding this as a food source for them which has an ongoing effect of increasing the natural health of the soil. Anyone who’s been cropping for a while, particularly if they’ve used urea in their soil, will have a significant loss of soil carbon. And this is a way of turning that around and increasing soil health.”
Scott explained the final, perfected GranU Carb product has been proven through field testing to:
- Increase nutrient holding capacity;
- Increase water holding capacity;
- Act as a buffer from toxic residues (like heavy metals);
- Loosen compacted soil (like clay);
- Boost microbial populations;
- Generally improve the structural integrity of the soil.