Agriculture’s greatest challenge now and in the future is availability of freshwater supply. As seen throughout the world, water availability for a growing population is putting a stain on irrigated cropping systems globally.
By 2050, it is estimated that the world’s population will top 9 billion, a 2 billion person increase over 2012. As a consequence, food production will have to increase by 50% on less viable land.
The chemistry and products that SNF currently offers to the agricultural market provide important means for increasing the efficiency of water and productivity, whether it be for turf, crop, or ornamental uses.
POLYACRYLAMIDE USE FOR TURF, CROP, AND ORNAMENTAL APPLICATIONS
SNF is the leading provider of polymers for irrigation efficiency in turf, crop, and ornamental applications. Our FLOBOND™ line of polyacrylamide (PAM) products provides a safe and efficient solution to water quality and quantity issues facing the turf, crop, and ornamental industry.
PAM increases soil porosity, which promotes uniform percolation and usable volume of the applied water. However, when PAM is used on sandy soils, it decreases percolation and allows plants to retain and utilize more of the applied water before it passes through the root zone.
In studies and of actual turf applications, FLOBOND™ has demonstrated the ability the increase water efficiency up to 20 percent.
Benefits of using FLOBOND™ include:
- Reduced water costs
- Reduced energy costs
- Improved overall turf quality
- Increase in playable surfaces
- Less runoff from irrigation and rain events
- Reduced localized dry spots and wet zones
- Green and sustainable
SUPERABSORBENTS FOR PRODUCTION AGRICULTURE APPLICATIONS
Water is one of the most valuable resources in the world, and modern agriculture consumes almost two thirds of the waters pumped worldwide. For this reason, the demand to conserve water supplies is increasing. SNF’s AQUASORB™ range of superabsorbent products are water retainers that are added to the soil to absorb moisture in between rain or irrigation events. As water comes in contact with and is absorbed by the AQUASORB™, it transforms and expands from dense dry, granular particles to a gel-like material – capable of absorbing up to four hundred times its weight in water.
When AQUASORB™ is added to soil, it is able to swell and store water and nutrients into its gel structure near the root zone of the crops, and readily releases the water and nutrients as the soil dries out, thereby reducing the possibility of crop stress.
AQUASORB™ can be used in many different applications. In production agriculture, placement of superabsorbent polymers in the furrow with seeds during planting has been shown to increase yield rates in dry-land crops.
Benefits of using AQUASORB™ include:
- Increased water and nutrient holding capacity of soils
- Enhanced plant growth
- Reduced wilting in dry conditions
- Reduced crop stress
- Reduced water usage
POLYACRYLAMIDE USE IN EROSION CONTROL
Soil porosity and poorly structured soils can be improved by using polyacrylamide (PAM) to prevent soil erosion and loss of nutrients. The cohesion of the soil is increased when PAM is used so that fewer sediment solids are washed away by water runoff. The result is an average reduction of 95% in erosion.
- The porosity of the soil is conserved, maintaining good infiltration of the soil by water.
- Nutrient leaching is reduced
- Germination rate is improved
PIVOT IRRIGATION RUT REDUCTION
SNF manufactures SOILPAM TRACKLOG™ (polyacrylamide-based gel logs) and TRACKSACK™ (with polyacrylamide-based tablets) designed to alleviate irrigation pivot track ruts, compaction and clods around wheel tracks, standing water, and the potential for getting stuck.
- Reduced pivot maintenance and downtime
- Less disease and pest potential caused by ponding
- Improved water infiltration and soil stabilization
- Overall cost savings
SOILPAM TRACKLOG is a gel log that minimizes center pivot wheel track ruts. For only a few dollars per acre, it offers more than a full season of use. TRACKLOGs can be hung over each wheel track tower. The sprinkler slowly dissolves the logs and stabilizes the soil in and around the tracks. TRACKLOGs work best in areas of high water flow and where ruts form quickly. The water flow immediately begins to dissolve the logs over time, allowing the polymer to drip down to stabilize and enhance the soil.
SOILPAM TRACKSACK is a mesh bag that contains tablets that are hung over the center pivot of a sprinkler or at the edge of a ditch in direct contact with irrigation water. This patented irrigation technology prevents the formation of deep ruts and wheel track erosion on slopes. TRACKSACK works well in areas where ruts form more slowly over the course of the season, as it is viable for up to 6 months.