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Acadian Open Academy

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By leveraging a diverse set of expertise, we are able to tackle the greatest challenges in agriculture. We are invested in transforming modern agriculture and pursuing breakthroughs that could disrupt current models. We believe we can benefit both plant and planet by seeking technology, science, and collaboration.

James Maude

SVP, Portfolio Development Group

Latest Research

Acadian has over 30 years of research focused on understanding the different biological processes that our seaweed extracts have on crops, with more than 80 peer-reviewed published papers. As we continue to support the future of agriculture, our current research focuses on the following areas.

At Acadian Plant Health, we already know that our seaweed extracts influence natural pathways within the plant. We would like to better understand more on how different application methods of our products may affect gene expression within a variety of crops to improve productivity, development, and stress tolerance within those crops. Increased knowledge in this area would allow us to better predict how APH products will perform under different growing conditions across different crops.

Currently, we are collaborating with KeyGene on this area of focus, who is a technology innovation company focused on research with expertise in plant physiology, molecular biology, and bioinformatics, including genome analyses.

An important area of research is the impact of abiotic stress on a plant’s growth and physiology. To date, our research has shown that Acadian seaweed extract enables improved osmotic adjustment under stress.

Through our current partnerships with researchers such as Dr. Sergey Shabala (University of Western Australia), we are working with leading researchers in the area of stress physiology who understand the impacts of abiotic stress. Continued work in this area will help us to better understand the mode of action that our products induce on a physiological level within the plant. This will lead to new product development in which our current leading seaweed extracts along with other biostimulants act synergistically within the plant.

The support of soil health and biodiversity is an important area of focus for Acadian Plant Health. Our team (Hines et al.) have previously published work on this topic with a study focused on the effect our seaweed extracts have on soil microbes. The goal of this research was to evaluate two primary suppositions; including whether the seaweed extracts have a direct effect on increasing the growth and colonization of mycorrhizal fungi, in addition to whether they promote a symbiotic relationship between plants and the fungi. The results of the study confirmed both suppositions, indicating that there was a direct correlation between our seaweed extract and the growth of the fungi along with an enhancement within the plant-microbe symbiosis.

With these results, more study in this area is desired. We would like to better understand the potential relationship between soil health and abiotic stress tolerance in plants. In order to accomplish this, we have partnered with Dr. Noah Fierer  (University of Colorado), a world-renowned soil ecologist. Research will explore different microbial populations in order to predict the effect of our biostimulants on various crops under different soil types and soil microbial populations, as we also better understand interactions between plants, microbes, and biostimulants. We hope to see this ground-breaking work provide new scientific insight into how biostimulants interact with both the plant and microbes to impart abiotic stress tolerance to crops.

Seaweed absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through photosynthesis and can sequester large amounts of carbon in its biomass. This can help mitigate the effects of climate change by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Understanding just how much CO2 has been absorbed in seaweed beds was a recent goal for Acadian. It turns out 362 kg of CO2 has been absorbed in every ton of seaweed Acadian harvests. That seaweed is harvested along the North Atlantic coast every year. So as the seaweed regrows after each harvest, that amount of carbon is absorbed once again. Without harvest the seaweed regrowth is minimal, so harvest creates a continuous cycle which holds huge potential to deliver on global climate goals.

Now our goal is to investigate the impact of that carbon once it is applied to crops. We know there is an improvement in soil health, but we will quantity increases in carbon from the microorganisms who are stimulated by it once in the soil.

Join Us

Do you have unique research skills in these areas? If you’d like to join our community of scientific professionals, we’d love to hear from you!