Strategies to Improve the Security and Nutritional Quality of Crop Species

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Crop Production".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2024 | Viewed by 8846

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation—State Research Institute, Czartoryskich 8 St, 24-100 Pulawy, Poland
Interests: production technology; cereals; yield; baking quality; cultivars; diseases; stress; mycotoxins

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Guest Editor
Department of Grain Processing and Bakery, Prof. Waclaw Dabrowski Institute of Agricultural and Food Biotechnology—State Research Institute, 02-532 Warsaw, Poland
Interests: wheat; crop quality; starch damage; rheological properties; mixolab

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nutritious and safe food is one of the main contributors to the health of society. These days, consumers are looking for food that is not only rich in nutrients but also has health-promoting benefits. The most important challenge, however, is for food to be safe for human health. The first step to meeting these goals is the quality of the raw material. The quality of the raw material supplied to the industry affects the final quality of the product obtained. Therefore, the cultivation technology of individual plant species is of colossal importance. On the one hand, through proper crop management, we can increase the number of nutrients and obtain raw materials suitable for use in various industries. On the other hand, inappropriate crop management can increase amounts of chemical pollution (residues of plant protection products) and physical pollution (heavy metals, nitrates, nitrites). Additionally, fungal diseases can lead to reduced quality and the production of toxic metabolites known as mycotoxins. Due to climate change, urbanisation and other human activities, there is a growing concern about the levels of these contaminants in food. In recent years, the use of biotechnology and genome editing of plants in order to enhance their nutritional value or increase their resistance to pests or unfavourable environmental conditions, such as drought, is also gaining more focus.

This Special Issue focuses on the role that soil quality, agrotechnology (tillage, forecrop, fertilisation, crop protection, harvesting) and varieties play in the production of high-quality food. For this reason, highly interdisciplinary quality research results from different research fields, including genetics, new genomic techniques and breeding, agriculture, food technology, and ecology, are welcome. Original scientific and review papers will be accepted.

Prof. Dr. Grazyna Podolska
Dr. Anna Szafranska
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • agrotechnology
  • varieties
  • soil quality
  • crops
  • nutrients
  • technological quality
  • health-promoting
  • safe health

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 2069 KiB  
Article
Influence of Nitrogen Fertilisation Level and Weather Conditions on Yield and Quantitative Profile of Anti-Nutritional Compounds in Grain of Selected Rye Cultivars
by Alicja Sułek, Grażyna Cacak-Pietrzak, Marcin Studnicki, Jerzy Grabiński, Anna Nieróbca, Marta Wyzińska and Marcin Różewicz
Agriculture 2024, 14(3), 418; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14030418 - 5 Mar 2024
Viewed by 702
Abstract
Cultivar, habitat conditions and agrotechnology have an influence on the yield and chemical composition of rye grain. The main anti-nutritional substances present in rye grain include alkylresorcinols, water-soluble pentosans and trypsin inhibitors. The aim of this study was to determine the variability in [...] Read more.
Cultivar, habitat conditions and agrotechnology have an influence on the yield and chemical composition of rye grain. The main anti-nutritional substances present in rye grain include alkylresorcinols, water-soluble pentosans and trypsin inhibitors. The aim of this study was to determine the variability in yield and the concentration of anti-nutritional compounds in the grain of selected winter rye cultivars in relation to nitrogen fertilisation levels and weather conditions. Field studies were conducted at the Experimental Station of IUNG-PIB in Osiny (Poland) in two growing seasons (2018/2019 and 2019/2020). The experiment was located on pseudo-polylic soil using the randomised sub-block method in three replications. The first factor of the experiment was the level of nitrogen fertilisation (0, 70 and 140 kg N∙ha−1) and the second was the population (Dańkowskie Skand, Piastowskie) and hybrid (KWS Vinetto, SU Performer) winter rye cultivars. The study showed that the yield of winter rye depended on the genotype and the level of nitrogen fertilisation. The hybrid cultivars yield ed 17.9% higher in relation to the population cultivars. The content of anti-nutritional compounds in rye grain depended significantly on genotype, level of nitrogen fertilisation and weather conditions. The reason for the higher synthesis of anti-nutrients in rye grain was the stressful weather conditions occurring in the 2019/2020 season. Nitrogen fertilisation influenced the content of alkylresorcinols, water-soluble pentosans and trypsin inhibitor activity in grain. The interaction of cultivar and fertilisation was also found to shape the content of the aforementioned anti-nutrients. Full article
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19 pages, 2197 KiB  
Article
Factors Influencing the Accumulation of Free Asparagine in Wheat Grain and the Acrylamide Formation in Bread
by Anna Szafrańska, Grażyna Podolska, Olga Świder, Danuta Kotyrba, Edyta Aleksandrowicz, Agnieszka Podolska-Charlery and Marek Roszko
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 207; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020207 - 28 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1541
Abstract
Asparagine is one of the precursors of acrylamide that can form during bread production. The aim of this work was to determine the effect of genotype, environment, sulfur fertilization, and the interaction of those factors on the asparagine content, technological value of wheat, [...] Read more.
Asparagine is one of the precursors of acrylamide that can form during bread production. The aim of this work was to determine the effect of genotype, environment, sulfur fertilization, and the interaction of those factors on the asparagine content, technological value of wheat, and acrylamide level in bread. The research material consisted of five wheat cultivars grown in two locations in Poland with nitrogen fertilization of 110 kg ha−1 and sulfur fertilization of 30 kg ha−1. The standard ISO method for analyzing the milling and baking properties of wheat was used. The UHPLC-MS/MS method for analyzing the amino acids and the GC/MS method for acrylamide in bread were implemented. The analysis of variance results indicated that the location influenced the total variance in the measured asparagine content and quality of wheat the most, followed by the cultivar and then by the interaction between the environment and cultivar. Sulfur fertilization had no significant effect on the asparagine content, but slightly lowered the gluten quality and loaf volume of bread. However, sulfur fertilization in connection with the cultivar characterized by low starch damage had a positive effect on lowering the acrylamide in bread. Asparagine content in wheat and acrylamide in bread varies mostly depending on cultivar and environment. Full article
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15 pages, 5013 KiB  
Article
Impact of Biochar Dose and Origin on Winter Wheat Grain Quality and Quantity
by Marta Wyzińska, Adam Kleofas Berbeć and Jerzy Grabiński
Agriculture 2024, 14(1), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14010039 - 24 Dec 2023
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Abstract
The agricultural application of biocarbons (biochar) derived from different biomass sources in the process of pyrolysis is a promising solution for crop productivity and quality, soil health improvement, and carbon sequestration. In a three-year study, the effects of low doses of biochar (1 [...] Read more.
The agricultural application of biocarbons (biochar) derived from different biomass sources in the process of pyrolysis is a promising solution for crop productivity and quality, soil health improvement, and carbon sequestration. In a three-year study, the effects of low doses of biochar (1 t∙ha−1 and 3 t∙ha−1) of different origins on winter wheat grain quantity and quality were tested. Six different biochar types were used: biochar derived from wheat husk (WHB), (2) extracted medical plant biomass biochar (MPB), (3) wood chip biochar (WCB), (4) wood sawdust biochar (SB), (5) biochar made from straw of rye (RSB), and (6) meat and bone biochar (MBMB). Higher doses of biocarbon had a positive effect only on wet gluten content. The use of different types of biochar showed a significant impact on grain parameters; however, the results were different in different years of this study. Among the tested biochars, SB (Saw Dust biochar) showed rather good results for most of the parameters tested (the highest grain yield in 2018, the highest weight of 1000 g in 2019, the lowest wet gluten content and gluten index in 2020, the lowest falling number in 2019, and the highest Zellenys index in 2019). MBMB biochar was one of the highest yielders in 2018, had the highest wet gluten content in 2018, and the highest gluten index in 2019 and 2020; the lowest Zelleny’s sedimentation index in 2019; and one of the lowest in 2020. Those made SB and MBMB the most promising biochars tested in this study. Full article
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16 pages, 3414 KiB  
Article
Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) Response to Different Forms of Sulfur Fertilizers
by Grzegorz Kulczycki, Elżbieta Sacała, Anna Koszelnik-Leszek and Łukasz Milo
Agriculture 2023, 13(9), 1773; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture13091773 - 7 Sep 2023
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Abstract
The aim of the study was to compare sulfate fertilizers and mixtures of elemental sulfur (S0) and sulfate in terms of yield and nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) status in perennial ryegrass. Mixtures of sulfate and S0 can reduce the [...] Read more.
The aim of the study was to compare sulfate fertilizers and mixtures of elemental sulfur (S0) and sulfate in terms of yield and nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) status in perennial ryegrass. Mixtures of sulfate and S0 can reduce the consumption of sulfate alone. The plants were grown in soil cultures. The plants were supplemented with S0, K2SO4, MgSO4, and (NH4)SO4 or a mixture of these salts with So. Two sulfur doses were applied and the ryegrass was harvested three times. Fresh and dry weights of each swath, the N and S content, and their uptake were determined. The total fresh yield of sulfur-fertilized plants was 25 to 94% higher compared to unfertilized plants. The increases in dry matter were even more significant. Fertilizers, being a mixture of S0 and sulfate, showed the same efficiency as those containing sulfate alone. Sulfur fertilization resulted in a higher S content and its uptake, lowered N concentration in second and third swatch, and a decrease in total N uptake. In conclusion, to achieve high crop yields, soil sulfur deficiency should be corrected and fertilizers that are the mixture of elemental sulfur and sulfate are a beneficial and effective approach. Full article
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Review

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13 pages, 1776 KiB  
Review
A Crop of High Nutritional Quality and Health Maintenance Value: The Importance of Tartary Buckwheat Breeding
by Ivan Kreft, Aleksandra Golob and Mateja Germ
Agriculture 2023, 13(9), 1783; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture13091783 - 8 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1138
Abstract
Tartary buckwheat (Fagopyrum tataricum (L.) Gaertn.), originating in the Himalayan area, is cultivated in central Asia and northern, central, and eastern Europe. Tartary buckwheat grain and sprouts are rich in flavonoid metabolites rutin and quercetin. The synthesis of flavonoids in plants is [...] Read more.
Tartary buckwheat (Fagopyrum tataricum (L.) Gaertn.), originating in the Himalayan area, is cultivated in central Asia and northern, central, and eastern Europe. Tartary buckwheat grain and sprouts are rich in flavonoid metabolites rutin and quercetin. The synthesis of flavonoids in plants is accelerated by UV-B solar radiation to protect the plants against radiation damage. During Tartary buckwheat food processing, a part of rutin is enzymatically converted to quercetin. Rutin and quercetin are able to pass the blood–brain barrier. Studies have investigated the effects of rutin and quercetin on blood flow to the brain, consequently bringing more nutrients and oxygen to the brain, and causing improved brain function. In addition to the impact on blood flow, rutin and quercetin have been shown to have antioxidative properties. The goals of breeding Tartary buckwheat are mainly to maintain and enhance the high nutritional quality. The goals could be reached via the breeding of Tartray buckwheat for larger cotyledons. Other main breeding efforts should be concentrated on the easy husking of the grain, the prevention of seed shattering, and the improvement in growth habits to obtain uniformity in grain ripening and a stable and high yield. Full article
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14 pages, 294 KiB  
Review
Foliar Fertilization of Crop Plants in Polish Agriculture
by Rafał Januszkiewicz, Grzegorz Kulczycki and Mateusz Samoraj
Agriculture 2023, 13(9), 1715; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture13091715 - 30 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1612
Abstract
Foliar fertilization makes it possible to quickly supply plants with deficient nutrients, in case of both their deficiency in the soil and hindered uptake. Crops are characterized by varying nutrient requirements for micronutrients, as well as varying sensitivity to their deficiency. The paper [...] Read more.
Foliar fertilization makes it possible to quickly supply plants with deficient nutrients, in case of both their deficiency in the soil and hindered uptake. Crops are characterized by varying nutrient requirements for micronutrients, as well as varying sensitivity to their deficiency. The paper presents practical aspects of the foliar feeding of plants with micronutrients using foliar fertilizers, and their general classification and characteristics. The requirements of basic crops (cereals, rapeseed and corn) for the application of micronutrient fertilization and the degree of their sensitivity to micronutrient deficiency were characterized. The market of foliar fertilizers and the directions of its development were evaluated. The possibilities of foliar fertilizers containing amino acids and silicon, and the possibility of using them for biofortification are presented. It was found that foliar fertilization is one of the most popular and effective methods for the biofortification of plants, as it allows the delivery of the right amount of specific elements in a specific stage of plant development and is thus an economical and environmentally safe procedure. In conclusion, the analysis of the foliar fertilizer market shows that its development is very dynamic, and foliar fertilization is becoming one of the basic elements in effective crop production. Further expansion of the range of foliar fertilizers produced should be expected in accordance with the growing expectations of agricultural producers. Full article
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