Symposium ‘Salinization of arable land’

Thursday September 28
13:30 uur – 15:00 uur
Language: English

Presentation Pier Vellinga
Presentation Arjen de Vos
Presentation Klaas Smits

Lecturer 1: Prof. Pier Vellinga (Wageningen University)
Saline soils, problem or opportunity?

Hundreds of millions of hectares worldwide are considered too salty to grow the usual crops. With climate change: more persistent droughts and accelerated sea level rise, the numbers of hectares is expected to grow rapidly. Can selection and breeding of salt tolerant crops be a solution? What are the bottlenecks and how about fertilisation and soil structure? Recent advances in this field will be covered by Pier Vellinga professor of Wageningen University.

Lecturer 2: Dr. Arjen de Vos (director Salt Farm Texel)
Testing crop salt tolerance under controlled field conditions in the Netherlands and the implementation in other countries

Salt Farm Texel has developed an open-air lab that is used to quickly screen hundreds of varieties of specific crops (until now the focus is on potato, brassica, onion, carrot, lettuce, strawberry), and it is also suitable to define the exact level of salt tolerance by using seven different salinity treatments. The determined level of salt tolerance also acts as a reference for the yield potential when these crops are introduced in other areas and countries. The facilities in the Netherlands have been operating for ten years and during the past three years the first salt tolerant varieties of potato and carrot have been introduced with success in Pakistan and Bangladesh. The open-air lab is also used to test germination under saline conditions and the role of soil additives, but also fertilizer use to increase the yield under saline conditions. All these aspects will be highlighted during the presentation.

Lecturer 3: Dr. Klaas Smits (director New Style Potato)
Commercial cultivation of salt tolerant potato
What is the market potential of a salt tolerant potato? Is salt tolerance an added value for a variety? The potato variety Miss Mignonne is the first potato that is marketed by highlighting its salt tolerance. Klaas Smits, CEO of New Style Potato B.V., will talk about the reasons why salt tolerance in potato is important and what the added values are at present and in the nearby future.

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