Adas develops knowledge exchange site to help the industry learn from Nitrogen Climate Smart project

A new knowledge exchange platform has been launched by Adas, initially targeted at farmers who are part of an ambitious project to grow more pulses and cut carbon emissions from UK agriculture.

NCS is a four-year project

NCS is a four-year project

The independent agricultural consultancy has created the PulsePEP (Performance Enhancement Platform), where trial results, data and supporting information from experts involved in the Nitrogen Climate Smart (NCS) project will be hosted.

Launched at The CropTec Show, the aim for the online tool is to bring together a community united behind the aims of the NCS initiative.

“The PulsePEP has been designed with farmers in mind – by sharing knowledge the PulsePEP will ensure we can produce pulse crops that are profitable and resilient, so that farmers will want to grow them,” said Dr Thomas Wilkinson, senior research consultant in crop physiology at Adas.

“Those farmers who are doing on-farm trials for the NCS project will share data that will hopefully demonstrate the benefits of growing pulses in rotations. These trials will implement and build on the latest scientific understanding from research platforms and small-plot trials.”

Major research programme

The NCS project is a four-year £5.9m research programme funded by Defra’s Farming Futures R&D fund, which is delivered by Innovate UK.

More than 200 UK farms will be involved in either trials, carbon baselining, or sharing information, while 17 industry partners will also be contributing their expertise. All of this knowledge will come together on PulsePEP, with the overall goal being to bring about a reduction of 1.5Mt CO2e per annum.

With the PulsePEP tool now live, the next stage of the project is to carbon baseline the farms involved. Tailored assistance will be provided by the Farm Carbon Toolkit (FCT), allowing GHG emissions to be tracked throughout the project.

Some of the farms will be appointed as ‘Pulse Pioneers’ and will be paid to carry out trials. These will involve novel concepts, ideas, products, rations and sensors designed to help farmers reduce GHG emissions. This will be administered by the British On-farm Innovation Network (BOFIN).

The PulsePEP is part of the wider FarmPEP digital platform and is specifically designed to focus on pulse topics and provide a specific home for material relating to pulse production.

“The PulsePEP is free to use and anyone can log on to view the content,” Wilkinson continued. “Those hoping to engage more can set up an account and then post content themselves or follow specific topics.

“Research from, and identified by, the NCS project partners will also be accessible, fulfilling the project’s aim to connect and link to a range of useful content associated with pulse growth. We highlight content to ensure it can be trusted and to help bring the most authoritative response to any queries raised.”