Agricultural and Food Science <p>Agricultural and Food Science (AFSci) is a peer-reviewed journal, published quarterly. AFSci publishes original research reports on agriculture and food research in relation to primary production in boreal agriculture. Acceptable papers must be of international interest and have a northern dimension. We especially welcome papers related to agriculture in Boreal and Baltic Sea Region.</p> en-US <p>Authors who publish with Agricultural and Food Science agree to the following terms:<br><br></p> <ol type="a"> <li class="show">Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a <a href="">Creative Commons Attribution License</a> that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.</li> <li class="show">Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.</li> <li class="show">Any part of the&nbsp;Agricultural and Food Science&nbsp;may be referred to assuming the Author, The Article, Publication with Volume and Number plus URL&nbsp;for the references have been provided.</li> </ol> (Tuula Puhakainen) (Antti-Jussi Nygård) Sun, 30 Jun 2024 18:19:10 +0300 OJS 60 A Comparison of Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Nitrogen Intensity, Gross Margin, and Land Use Occupation between Comparable Conventional and Organic Managed Dairy Farms <p>In this study, 200 Norwegian dairy farms were analyzed over three years to compare greenhouse gas emissions, nitrogen (N) intensity, gross margin, and land use occupation between organically and conventionally managed farms. Conventionally managed farm groups were constructed based on propensity matching, selecting the closest counterparts to organically managed farms (n=15). These groups, each containing 15 farms, were differentiated by an increasing number of matching variables. The first group was matched based on geographical location, milk quota, and milking cow units. In the second match, the proportion of milking cows in the total cattle herd was added, and in the third, the ratio of milk delivered to milk produced and concentrate usage per dairy cow were included. The analysis showed that the conventionally managed farms (n=185) had higher greenhouse gas emissions (1.42 vs 0.98 kg CO<sub>2 </sub>per 2.78 MJ of edible energy from milk and meat, calculated as GWP<sub>100-AR4</sub>) and higher N intensity (6.9 vs 5.0 kg N input per kg N output) compared to the organic farms (N=15). When comparing emissions per kg of energy-corrected milk (ECM) delivered, conventional farms also emitted more CO<sub>2</sub> (1.07 vs 0.8 kg CO<sub>2</sub> per kg ECM). Furthermore, conventionally managed farms showed lower gross margins both in terms of NOK per 2.78 MJ edible energy delivered (5.8 vs 6.5 NOK) and per milking cow unit (30 100 vs 34 400 NOK), and they used less land (2.9 vs 3.6 m² per 2.78 MJ edible energy delivered) compared to organic farms. No differences were observed among the three conventionally managed groups in terms of emissions, N intensity, land use occupation, and gross margin.</p> Kristian Hansen, Matthias Koesling, Håvard Steinshamn, Bjørn Gunnar Hansen, Tommy Dalgaard, Sissel Hansen Copyright (c) 2024 Kristian Hansen, Matthias Koesling, Håvard Steinshamn, Bjørn Gunnar Hansen, Tommy Dalgaard, Sissel Hansen Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Pulp mill sludges as a solution for reducing the risk of mineral nitrogen leaching from agriculture <p>Nitrogen (N) from agricultural systems contributes to the eutrophication of waterbodies through leaching. Incorporating organic material with a high carbon-to-nitrogen (C/N) ratio, such as mixed pulp mill sludges (PMSs), into the soil in autumn could reduce the amount of leachable N. This study tested the potential of composted and lime-stabilised mixed PMSs (CPMS and LPMS) in reducing the concentration of mineral N in the soil, and thus the risk of N leaching from arable land in the boreal region using a two-year field experiment. To better understand the mechanisms of the PMSs for influencing mineral N concentration in soil, the impact of PMSs with different quality on the reactions of N in the soil was investigated in a laboratory incubation study. In the field experiment, nitrate-N (NO<sub>3</sub><sup>-</sup>-N) concentration was lower with PMSs compared to mineral fertilisation and the control during the first autumn and the following spring after PMS application. The undersowing of Italian ryegrass reduced the NO<sub>3</sub><sup>-</sup>-N concentration in the soil during the first autumn. In the incubation experiment, PMSs reduced the soil ammonium-N (NH<sub>4</sub><sup>+</sup>-N) concentration at the beginning of the experiment and the soil NO<sub>3</sub><sup>-</sup>-N concentration throughout the experiment compared to a mineral fertiliser treatment and an organic fertiliser. Increased soil respiration in PMS-treated soils indicated increase in microbial activity, and thus immobilisation of soil NO<sub>3</sub><sup>-</sup>-N and NH<sub>4</sub><sup>+</sup>-N due to PMSs addition. These results suggest that PMSs have the potential to reduce N leaching from agricultural soils. However, the immobilisation of N must be considered when planning the nutrient requirements of the following crops.</p> Sari Kinnula, Sanna Kanerva, Helena Soinne, Marjaana Toivonen, Juuso Joona, Antti Tuulos, Tuure Parviainen, Ossi Kinnunen, Jukka Kivelä Copyright (c) 2024 Sari Kinnula, Sanna Kanerva, Helena Soinne, Marjaana Toivonen, Juuso Joona, Antti Tuulos, Tuure Parviainen, Ossi Kinnunen, Jukka Kivelä Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Gypsum and structure lime amendments in boreal agricultural clay soils: Do climate emissions compromise water quality benefits? <p>We examine cost-effectiveness and social net benefits of using soil amendments, gypsum and structure lime, in reducing phosphorus loading while accounting for the climate emissions from both amendments. Recent field experiments and large-scale pilots in Finland and Sweden suggest that both gypsum and structure lime improve soil structure and can reduce total P loading from clayey fields but differ as soil amendments. While gypsum does not change soil pH, structure lime helps to adjust it to a desired level. Drawing on literature, gypsum is postulated to reduce both dissolved (25%) and particulate losses (50%) of phosphorus, while structure lime is postulated to reduce only particulate phosphorus (40%). Life-cycle analysis is applied to determine greenhouse gas emissions from both soil amendments. We examine 5 and 10 years impacts on phosphorus loss by choosing doses and their timing accordingly. Both amendments provide the highest water quality benefits on erodible soils or soils with high soil phosphorus. Accounting for climate issues drastically changes the picture. Greenhouse gas emissions from gypsum production are 14.43 kgCO2e ha<sup>-1</sup>, and those from structure lime from pristine materials are 1837 kgCO2e ha<sup>-1</sup>. Cost-effectiveness of P load reduction including carbon price of GHG emissions is 59 € kg<sup>-1</sup>P for gypsum and 122 € kg<sup>-1</sup>P for structure lime. At the national level (application to 0.54 Mha), differences in greenhouse gas emissions without soil emissions are huge and in favour of gypsum (0.048 Mt and 1.04 Mt). Structure lime from recycled zero-emission materials performs well but its supply is very limited.</p> Markku Ollikainen, Sanna Lötjönen, Tommi Tikkanen, Venla Ala-Harja, Risto Uusitalo, Petri Ekholm Copyright (c) 2024 Markku Ollikainen, Sanna Lötjönen, Tommi Tikkanen, Venla Ala-Harja, Risto Uusitalo, Petri Ekholm Sat, 06 Jul 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Intake, gain and carcass traits of Hereford and Simmental bulls offered total mixed rations based on red clover and whole-crop barley silages <p>Total mixed rations (TMR) based on red clover silage (RS), whole-crop barley silage (BS) and mixture of RS and BS were fed to thirty Hereford (HF) and thirty Simmental (SI) bulls. The proportion (g kg<sup>-1</sup> dry matter (DM)) of the silages in the TMRs were as follows: (1) RS (600); (2) BS (600); (3) RS (300) and BS (300). Concentrate proportion was 400 g kg<sup>-1</sup> DM. Breed × feeding interactions were observed for intake parameters. Replacing RS by BS tended to increase DM and nutrient intake more in the SI compared to the HF breed. For growth performance a significant quadratic effect was observed for the dietary treatments; both the live weight gain and carcass gain were the highest when RS was partially replaced by BS. There were no differences in carcass weight, dressing proportion or carcass conformation among the dietary treatments. However, replacing RS by BS increased carcass fatness. The SI bulls had higher growth rate and they produced better conformed carcasses and less fat compared to the HF bulls.</p> Arto Kalevi Huuskonen, Maiju Pesonen, Katariina Manni Copyright (c) 2024 Arto Kalevi Huuskonen, Maiju Pesonen, Katariina Manni Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Effects of harvest date and additives on maize silage quality under boreal conditions <p>There is increasing interest in Finland to cultivate maize for silage, although the climatic conditions are in the borderline for maize due to the short and cool growing season. This may result in an immature crop that differs from typical maize for ensiling by having low dry matter (DM) and starch concentrations. We evaluated the preservation characteristics of forage maize during 2019 and 2020 harvested in Helsinki, Finland, at two stages of maturity. The DM concentration of the crops ranged from 230 to 360 g kg<sup>-1</sup>, and starch concentration from 179 to 283 g kg<sup>-1</sup> DM. The crops were ensiled in laboratory scale using four different chemical organic acid based additives or a heterofermentative lactic acid bacteria inoculant. A control silage without additive treatment was also included. All silages were well fermented with low pH (average 3.75) and proportion of ammonia N in total N (average 47 g kg<sup>-1</sup>). Formic acid based additives restricted silage fermentation and most chemical additives improved the aerobic stability of maize silages compared to the control and inoculant treated silages that, under the conditions of the current study, did not differ from each other. </p> Marketta Rinne, Marcia Franco, Kaisa Kuoppala, Taina Jalava, Tomasz Stefanski, Tuomo Kokkonen Copyright (c) 2024 Marketta Rinne, Marcia Franco, Kaisa Kuoppala, Taina Jalava, Tomasz Stefanski, Tuomo Kokkonen Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Effect of distillers yeast in feed on texture, fatty acid profile and antioxidant properties of breast muscle of broiler chickens <p>This research aimed to assess the impact of replacing a partially of post-extraction soybean meal in the diet with varying amounts of distillers yeast (3, 6 and 9%) on the composition and quality in the pectoral muscles of broiler chickens. Findings revealed that cockerels fed with 3% yeast exhibited elevated oleic acid levels and reduced n-6 fatty acids compared to those fed with 6% and 9% yeast. Furthermore, chickens consuming 3% yeast displayed higher antioxidant capacity (ABTS) and decreased levels of linoleic acid and its ratio to α-linolenic acid compared to the 9% yeast group. Moreover, muscles from cockerels on the 3% yeast diet and the control group demonstrated<br />higher shear force, lower n-6/n-3 ratio and lipid peroxidation rate (TBARS) than those on the 9% yeast regimen. Conversely, cockerels on the 9% yeast diet exhibited reduced gumminess and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) compared to the control group. The study highlights yeast’s role in altering broiler chicken meat’s fatty acid profile, texture, and antioxidant properties.</p> Artur Rybarczyk, Gabriela Haraf, Grzegorz Tokarczyk, Mirosława Teleszko, Izabella Tobolska, Grzegorz Bienkiewicz Copyright (c) 2024 Artur Rybarczyk, Gabriela Haraf, Grzegorz Tokarczyk, Mirosława Teleszko, Izabella Tobolska, Grzegorz Bienkiewicz Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Root growth dynamics and biomass input of four over-wintering herbaceous crops in boreal conditions <p>Root growth of winter wheat (<em>Triticum</em> <em>aestivum</em> L.), winter rye (<em>Secale</em> <em>cereale</em> L.), red clover (<em>Trifolium</em> <em>pratense</em> L.), and timothy (<em>Phleum</em> <em>pratense</em> L.) was recorded to evaluate the environmental potential of over-wintering crops in a Nordic agroecosystem. In a field experiment on Aquic Haplocryoll soil, root intensities (number of roots/area) were measured to 50 cm depth by minirhizotron microvideo camera technology over a two -year period (21 recording sessions). At anthesis, root biomass and morphological parameters were measured by destructive soil sampling and image analysis of washed roots. Winter cereal roots reached 50 cm depth as soon as the autumn of the seeding year. For both post-seeding years, timothy roots developed the most intensively in spring, while red clover had higher root intensity than timothy in late autumn. At anthesis, the crops were ranked timothy &gt; red clover &gt; winter wheat &gt; winter rye according to root length density, surface area density, and biomass. Based on S:R ratios, red clover appears to offer the most intense carbon sink at 0–60 cm soil depth. Over-wintering crops had living roots in the subsoil both in late autumn and early spring, indicating potential to plant available nutrient uptake outside the growing season of annual crops. </p> Laura Alakukku, Perttu Virkajärvi, Sanna Kykkänen, Liisa Pietola Copyright (c) 2024 Laura Alakukku, Perttu Virkajärvi, Sanna Kykkänen, Liisa Pietola Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 Optimum N-rate and effect of split N fertilization timing on yield and quality in spring oat varieties <p>Split nitrogen (N) application to oats delays final decisionson total application rate, which could help achieve the economic optimum fertilization rate (OptN) and reduce nitrogen losses. Later topdressing allows adjustment of fertilizer level at a stage when it is easier to predict nitrogen supply from soil. The objectives were: to investigate whether topdressing can be applied after stem elongation and to assess effects on yield and quality in different oat varieties; and to study the variation in optimum N-rate and the possibility to predict and readjust it during the growing season. In 14 field experiments conducted in Sweden 2020–2022, the effect of split nitrogen application, with topdressing at growth stage (GS) 32, GS45, or GS55–61, on yield and quality in six different oat varieties was evaluated. Late topdressing increased grain protein concentration and decreased fat content, but variety was more important for target quality. Compared with a single early application, late topdressing did not affect yield significantly. Year and site influenced yield and quality, similarly for all varieties, but had an impact on the effect N-treatment had on protein. A multiple regression analysis showed that yield at OptN and N-uptake in unfertilized plots at GS31–47, can explain the variation in OptN and thus be used to estimate OptN. Topdressing as late as at GS45–61 increased the chances both of higher protein and more accurate prediction of OptN. Therefore, recommendations for late topdressing can be preferable if there is a target for high protein or if there are incentives to use crop sensors for late and accurate adjustments of N fertilization rates between and within fields. The recommendations should not be dependent on variety. </p> Lena Engström, Sofia Delin, Johanna Wetterlind, Anders Jonsson, Shah Syed Rehmat Ullah Copyright (c) 2024 Lena, Sofia Delin, Johanna Wetterlind, Anders Jonsson, Shah Syed Rehmat Ullah Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 What Causes Finnish Family Farmers Feel Successful? The Role of Resources and Entrepreneurial Characteristics <p><span class="TextRun SCXW130874178 BCX8" lang="EN-US" xml:lang="EN-US" data-contrast="auto">This study investigates the influences of resources and entrepreneurial characteristics on perceived success in family<br />farms using the Resource-Based Theory and Entrepreneurial Orientation perspectives. Resources and entrepreneurial orientation are used to identify success perceptions. Confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modelling were applied to the survey data of 805 Finnish family farmers. Family farmers rate their skills as good, and their abilities of proactiveness and self-realization success as high. The results suggest that both resources and entrepreneurial orientation affect the perceived success of family farmers, although the role of entrepreneurial <br />orientation is relatively small. Co-variability between resources and entrepreneurial orientation is positive, addressing<br />the change towards the same direction. This study promotes the understanding of the family perspective and its role in the successful use of resources and entrepreneurial capabilities in farming and offers a developed construct for family farm business research.<br /></span></p> Furkan Yigit, Leena Rantamäki-Lahtinen, Timo Sipiläinen Copyright (c) 2024 Furkan Yigit, Leena Rantamäki-Lahtinen, Timo Sipiläinen Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300 The effect of relative humidity and the use of algae-based biostimulants on fruit set, yield and fruit size of arctic bramble (Rubus arcticus) <p>Arctic bramble is a niche berry crop with highly variable yield and fruit quality, often limited by low fruit set and incomplete fruit development. In this study, we investigated the effects of relative humidity (RH) and algae-based biostimulants on fruit set, yield, fruit weight and the number of drupelets per fruit. In Experiment 1, arctic bramble cvs. ‘Alli’ and ‘Mesma’ were grown in a greenhouse in 40, 60 or 80% RH and pollinated by bumblebees. In Experiments 2 and 3, commercial biostimulant products Kelpak, Cremalga, Kriss and Alginamin were tested on cv. ‘Alli’ in a greenhouse, and an open high tunnel. Fruit set and yield were strongly affected by RH, being highest in either 40% RH for cv. ‘Mesma’ or 60% RH for cv. ‘Alli’, reduced by nearly 50% in 80% RH. Kriss and Alginamin increased fruit weight by as much as 18% but there was no effect on total yield. We conclude that control of relative humidity in greenhouse cultivation, especially to avoid very high RH conditions, can be highly beneficial for arctic bramble, and that algae-based biostimulants show potential to improve fruit weight.</p> Tero Tommila, Pauliina Palonen Copyright (c) 2024 Tero Tommila, Pauliina Palonen Sun, 30 Jun 2024 00:00:00 +0300