Baltic Sea Commitment: Yara demonstrates N-Sensor in Finland
Oslo, July 17, 2013
Yara, the Baltic Deal demo farm network, and Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG) promoted three N-Sensor demonstrations in Finland during June and July this year. The events were part of Yara's commitment to protect the Baltic Sea and improve agriculture productivity. The events took place at Toivo farm in Halikko, at Levomäki farm in Loimaa and Broby farm in Raasepori.
The first demonstration was at the Ruponen’s farm named Toivo - which means Hope - in southwestern Finland, on June 10. Farmers, partners and the media were invited to learn about best agricultural practices and see how the N-Sensor works in action.
"The world population will increase by 70 percent by 2050, which means that food production needs to increase markedly, but not at the cost of the environment," said Tero Hemmilä, Yara's Country Manager in Finland when he opened the event, standing at the edge of a field on Olli-Pekka Ruponen's farm in Halikko.
During the event farmers had an opportunity to familiarize themselves with Yara's N-Sensor precision fertilization technology, as contractor Rabbe Fagerstöm demonstrated the device in the field.
"The device determines the need of N-fertilizers on the go and applies the right amount of fertilizer exactly where it is needed - this way nitrogen does not accumulate in the soil or leak into waterways," Tero explains.
Field demos of precision tools are part of Yara’s commitment to improve productivity and environmental performance across the countries at the Baltic rim.
"To promote the N-Sensor, Yara and Fagerström have an agreement that he will apply nitrogen fertilizer using the N-Sensor technique on selected farms. In this way, many farmers will learn about the possibilities the new technology offers. Farmers have shown great interest in split and precision fertilization," says Yara Finland's Head of Marketing and Business Development Jari Pentinmäki.
Concrete actions to protect the Baltic Sea
“The N-Sensor is an example of a win-win method: the farmer gets a good yield without unnecessary strain on the environment,” said Susanna Kaasinen, who represented the Baltic Deal project.
According to BSAG Project Manager Eija Hagelberg, Yara's N-Sensor provides a good example of the Baltic Sea commitment for other parties, and a good reason for continuing the effort. "The Baltic Sea is not saved by mere talk. We also need action," urges Hagelberg.
The Ruponen Farm is just one of more than 100 farms around the Baltic Sea participating in the project.
First commitment: Phosphorus leakage reduced by 60 percent
The Baltic Sea Action Group collects Baltic Sea commitments from companies and organizations. Yara's first commitment to the Baltic Sea Action Group to protect the Baltic Sea took place in 2010, when Yara's gypsum-based products were launched to reduce the phosphorus load caused by agriculture.
"The good results demonstrated in our first commitment encouraged us to continue this important work for the Baltic Sea. The aim of our commitment this year is to reduce nitrogen run-off from fields into waterways," Tero concludes.