2 Well-Known Ag Companies Partner, Generate Nitrogen Fixing Microbial Products

Two well-known agricultural powerhouse companies are collaborating in an effort of reducing the need and amount of chemical fertilizer inputs to the environment, all while increasing crop yields.  

Mosaic, a leading producer of potash and concentrated phosphate crop nutrients for fertilizers and BioConsortia, an innovator in microbial product discovery, announced an agreement to produce new nitrogen-fixing microbial products for corn, wheat and other major non-legume row crops. The goal is to increase effectiveness of fertilizers while it reduces the need for and amount of chemical fertilizer inputs in the environment.  

The two companies are looking at both naturally occurring and gene-edited microbes around biological nitrogen fixation. Through the process, beneficial plant-associated microbes naturally produce nitrogen in forms that are desired by plants and reduce the reliance on syntenic inputs of nitrogen. 

BioConsortia CEO Marcus Meadows-Smith says the products are designed to reduce the amount of conventional nitrogen fertilizer which will improve the grower’s revenue and crop yields.  

“What we’re looking to do is create the same sort of natural symbiotic relationship between microbes that will convert atmospheric nitrogen for corn, wheat and other non-legume crops,” says Meadows-Smith.   BioConsortia CEO Marcus Meadows-Smith

(Headshot of BioConsortia CEO Marcus Meadows-Smith).

BioConsortia has already discovered naturally occurring spore-forming microbes capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen and colonizing corn, wheat and other non-leguminous plants. Meadows-Smith says it is a development to commercialization agreement with hopes of commercialization within the next couple of years.  

“We’ve already identified microbes that fix atmospheric nitrogen,” says Meadows-Smith. “What we’re doing now is moving leads into the development phase and carrying out field trials in partnership with Mosaic.”  

Meadows-Smith says the technology of cutting-edge strain improvement and gene-editing will develop natural and improved microbial products to increase crop yields, maintain or reduce fertilizer inputs, include higher revenues and improved sustainability. 

“It’s a great way to deliver nitrogen to the plant through the growing season. That’s the target of the research,” says Meadows-Smith. 

According to a BioConsortia press release, “Mosaic will have exclusive rights to the nitrogen fixing technology for core row crops in the Americas, initially focused on corn, wheat, cotton and sugarcane. BioConsortia will retain all rights to the technology for fruit, vegetable, turf and ornamental crops and for all uses outside of the Americas.”  

Picture courtesy: BioConsortia


Latest News

How Important is U.S. Ag and Food to the Economy?

In celebration of National Ag Day and National Ag Week, the 2023 Feeding the Economy report shows just how vital the industry is to U.S. families, communities and the world.

Ferrie: Ready, Set, Whoops! A Fast Start To Fieldwork Could Cost You Big In Corn At V5

Caution can help you avoid creating compaction or density layers. Plus, if you're applying anhydrous now, allowing 14 days between the application and planting can prevent dead or damaged plants and costly yield dings.

Nebraska Farmland Values Jump 14% in 2023 — Up 30% in Two Years

This year marks the second-largest increase in the market value of agricultural land in Nebraska since 2014 and the highest non-inflation-adjusted statewide land value in the 45-year history of the survey. 

U.S. Milk Production and Cow Numbers Both Rise

The February 2023 USDA Milk Production report showed an 0.8% increase in year-over-year milk production with a total of 17.7 billion lbs. of milk. Also following suit, U.S. cow numbers also documented growth.

Crude Oil Prices Drop Below $70: What is the Outlook for Consumers at the Pump and Farmers Heading Into Spring Planting?

Oil prices are also off their highs of last year and gas and diesel prices are also sliding at the pump, but will that trend continue ahead of planting?   Energy experts are hoping the answer is yes.  

Can the $20-Billion Inflation Reduction Act Get Rolled Out Quickly Enough?

Industry experts say the new legislative package represents a 'generational opportunity' for conservation funding and needs to reach U.S. farmers and livestock producers sooner rather than later, starting this spring.