JKI and its Uruguayen partner INIA (Instituto Nacional de Investigación Agropecuaria) organized an international workshop at Montevideo/Uruguay adjacent to the REDBIO conference. From 14-16 November 2019, fifty experts are discussing the role of soil microbiomes in agro-ecosystems for soil and plant health and the potential for development of more sustainable farming practices. The workshop will offer a unique opportunity to initiate bilateral projects aiming at developing a hypothesis-driven research framework to gain a better mechanistic understanding of the effects of agricultural management practices on soil microbiomes and interrelations in agricultural soils residing in different geographic and climatic zones. The workshop would not only allow for discussing the current state of the art and future perspectives, but also serve as a think tank to define research needs, methodological approaches and standards for field trials and sampling strategies and last but not least to initiate joint collaborative projects.
The global agricultural production has been tremendously intensified during the last decades. The ultimate aim of higher yields in order to meet rising demands for food, feed and energy has resulted in a number of negative environmental impacts such as reduced soil fertility, accumulation of plant pathogens, environmental contamination with agrochemicals or soil erosion. Soils are considered to be of utmost importance for ecosystem processes. A better understanding of the complex interactions between plants, beneficial soil microorganisms, plant pathogens and the soil physical and chemical properties under various agricultural management practices is needed in order maintain soils as a natural resource and to accomplish the second green revolution. Therefore, a number of research programs were launched recently.
Studying effects of agricultural management practices on soils has a long tradition in different countries of South America. Thus, also during the REDBIO conference 2019 in Montevideo, Uruguay, several sessions will be devoted to soil microorganisms and inoculants. REDBIO represents the most important biotechnology network in Latin America and the Caribbean.