The last edition of the Fertiliser Manual (RB209) was published by Defra in 2010. AHDB has taken on ownership and responsibility for the guide and plans to publish a revised edition called the Nutrient Management Guide (RB209) in May 2017.
Nutrient management is one of the key elements to optimising production in the field.
The Fertiliser Manual (RB209) offers best practice guidance in England, Wales and Northern Ireland on application of organic materials and manufactured fertilisers, and to crops and grassland.
The guide aims to maximise yields while keeping environmental impacts to a minimum. The data is also used to update Technical Notes in Scotland.
Over 68 per cent of farms have a nutrient management plan. A high proportion of farms revisit the plan year after year to improve management. Therefore, it is really important that farmers and growers have the correct information to make important decisions.
Review of research to update guidance
In September 2015, AHDB commissioned a review of research on nutrient management carried out since the last edition of the Fertiliser Manual (RB209) was published in 2010.
The findings of this review will feed into the development of the Nutrient Management Guide (RB209), which will be published in May 2017.
The review was conducted by a consortium led by ADAS and is published in six chapters:
UK partnership for crop nutrient management
AHDB leads a partnership of organisations that aims to coordinate research and knowledge exchange on crop nutrient management. The partnership is organised as a Steering Group supported by three Technical Working Groups.
The UK Partnership for Crop Nutrient Management
George is Chairman of the Steering Group and farms in Scotland.
He grows spring barley for seed in partnership with his brother on their family farm in Kinross, Perthshire.
He has worked extensively with the NFUS, where he is treasurer, past chair of the Land Use and Environment Committee and also represents NFUS on AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds' Research and Knowledge Transfer Committee.
George also chairs Scottish Agronomy, a co-op based in East Scotland that provides trials and advice to members, who farm around 50,000 hectares of cereals and potatoes.
He said: "Crop nutrition is one of the key elements to optimising production in the field.
"As a farmer, I use all the tools available to ensure that I manage resources efficiently, in terms of soil, applications and plant health.
"And I'm not alone, over 68 per cent of farms have a nutrient management plan, a high proportion of them revisit these resources year after year to continue to manage crop nutrition. Therefore, it is really important that we have the correct information to make these decisions.
"There had been no planned update of RB209 so I am really excited that AHDB is carrying out this review so we have more accurate data with which to make better management decisions in the near future."
Agricultural Industries Confederation
Association of Independent Crop Consultants
British Grassland Society
British Society of Plant Breeders
Catchment Sensitive Farming
CF Fertilisers UK
K+S Kali UK
Meat Promotion Wales
Paul Towns Ltd
Potash Development Association
Quality Meat Scotland
UK Vineyard Association