On 28th March 2022, we held a joint stakeholder forum workshop with high-level stakeholders.

Both MINAGRIS and Papillons are aiming to establish an inventory of the uses of agricultural plastics (AP) in Europe, explore the effects of AP on soil quality (soil biota, soil structure), and study fate, fragmentation, microbial colonisation and decay of AP in soil. They will both conduct a sustainability performance assessment of AP use in comparison to alternative techniques, as well as carry out large scale dissemination of results and involvement of end-users. The stakeholder forum with Papillons was formed due to our similar aims. This forum allows both projects to engage with our key stakeholders in an effective way, thus maximising engagement and ensuring we reach a wide diversity of audiences.

During the event, speakers shared initial findings from both projects and began discussions with participants, with a focus on the advice and information available surrounding agricultural plastic use.

How do microplastics affect food safety? In this video, MINAGRS partner Dr Huerta Lwanga of Wageningen University and Research discusses the issue of plastic use in agriculture (fertilizer, compost, mulch, sludge etc.). Microplastics in soil affect soil life and crop growth; these plastic particles can additionally migrate through the soil food chain and eventually into the crops. Huerta Lwanga’s work has found that soil diversity and soil ecosystem services change due to the presence of microplastics. So, what does this mean for the environment and food safety? Watch this video to find out. 

 

Our kick-off meeting took place in The Netherlands as a hybrid event between 20-23rd September 2021. Each work package presented their overall objectives for the project and we discussed how we will develop our experimental methodologies. 

 Minagris Kick off meeting Cuted  minagris_kom.jpg

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During a recent visit to one of our UK case study sites, we spoke with our farmer participant to find out whether they have been experimenting with alternatives to plastic products.

As shown below, they have introduced compostable biomulch to the farm as they were unhappy with the amount of debris left by traditional plastic mulches. Our farmer stated that they would not be able to grow their organic leeks without this mulch.

The below photos show biomulch which will biodegrade more rapidly than plastic mulches. Pictures taken by: Charlotte Chivers

Community farm nov 20212UK CSS community farm biomulch Chivers