Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

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Review: Make ruminants green again - How can sustainable intensification and agroecology converge for a better future?
Dumont, B. ; Groot, J.C.J. ; Tichit, M. - \ 2018
Animal 12 (2018)s2. - ISSN 1751-7311 - p. s210 - s219.
ecosystem services - efficiency - food systems - redesign - sustainability

Livestock farming systems provide multiple benefits to humans: protein-rich diets that contribute to food security, employment and rural economies, capital stock and draught power in many developing countries and cultural landscape all around the world. Despite these positive contributions to society, livestock is also the centre of many controversies as regards to its environmental impacts, animal welfare and health outcomes related to excessive meat consumption. Here, we review the potentials of sustainable intensification (SI) and agroecology (AE) in the design of sustainable ruminant farming systems. We analyse the two frameworks in a historical perspective and show that they are underpinned by different values and worldviews about food consumption patterns, the role of technology and our relationship with nature. Proponents of SI see the increase in animal protein demand as inevitable and therefore aim at increasing production from existing farmland to limit further encroachment into remaining natural ecosystems. Sustainable intensification can thus be seen as an efficiency-oriented framework that benefits from all forms of technological development. Proponents of AE appear more open to dietary shifts towards less animal protein consumption to rebalance the whole food system. Agroecology promotes system redesign, benefits from functional diversity and aims at providing regulating and cultural services. We analyse the main criticisms of the two frameworks: Is SI sustainable? How much can AE contribute to feeding the world? Indeed, in SI, social justice has long lacked attention notably with respect to resource allocation within and between generations. It is only recently that some of its proponents have indicated that there is room to include more diversified systems and food-system transformation perspectives and to build socially fair governance systems. As no space is available for agricultural land expansion in many areas, agroecological approaches that emphasise the importance of local production should also focus more on yield increases from agricultural land. Our view is that new technologies and strict certifications offer opportunities for scaling-up agroecological systems. We stress that the key issue for making digital science part of the agroecological transition is that it remains at a low cost and is thus accessible to smallholder farmers. We conclude that SI and AE could converge for a better future by adopting transformative approaches in the search for ecologically benign, socially fair and economically viable ruminant farming systems.

Agronomic and socioeconomic sustainability of farming systems : A case in Chencha, South Ethiopia
Dersseh, Waga Mazengia - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Paul Struik, co-promotor(en): Rogier Schulte. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463436830 - 157
potatoes - solanum tuberosum - ethiopia - food security - farming systems - mixed farming - sustainability - optimization - efficiency - farm surveys - household surveys - socioeconomics - self sufficiency - profits - training - agronomic characteristics - productivity - soil fertility - rotation - animal feeding - improved varieties - inorganic fertilizers - aardappelen - ethiopië - voedselzekerheid - bedrijfssystemen - gemengde landbouw - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - optimalisatie - efficiëntie - bedrijfsonderzoeken - huishoudonderzoeken - sociale economie - zelfvoorziening - winsten - opleiding - agronomische kenmerken - productiviteit - bodemvruchtbaarheid - rotatie - diervoedering - veredelde rassen - anorganische meststoffen

Potato has multiple benefits and thus can play a vital role in ensuring food security in Ethiopia. However, for diverse reasons, its productivity is low. The farming systems in Ethiopia in which potato is grown, are predominantly mixed farming systems.

Most of the research in Ethiopia is focused on crop-specific constraints and thus there is limited research in which the interrelations between crop and livestock management practices are investigated. There is also not enough research focused on combined analysis of soil nutrient and animal feed balances and agronomic and socioeconomic efficiencies at farm level.

This study assessed production constraints and agronomic and socioeconomic sustainability of the farming systems in South Ethiopia and explored the possible synergetic options to alleviate major constraints. More specifically, the study intended to quantify the variation in input and output among farms, to identify constraints hindering expansion of potato production, to evaluate the sustainability of the farming systems at farm level, to identify constraints of sustainable intensification, and to explore synergetic solutions for the major constraints. Different research approaches were used ranging from lab analysis, household surveys, group discussions, to farm surveys.

Results showed that constraints related to input and product use in potato production vary across households indicating a need for a pluriform advisory model recognizing (and building upon alleviation of) the diversity of constraints identified in this analysis. The sustainability of the farming system is constrained by low agricultural productivity, low soil fertility, poor labour efficiency and limited economic return associated with improper crop rotation, inappropriate soil fertility management practices, shortage of animal feed, labour- and economically inefficient farm practices and labour shortage. However, there is ample scope to overcome the major constraints and simultaneously to optimize farm management.

The core messages of the study can be summarized as follows:

1) the current potato production is characterized by low productivity and economic returns due to various socioeconomic, agronomic and biological factors;

2) the soil fertility is low and there is uneven distribution of nutrients over plots with relatively high fertility levels in the homestead areas;

3) the current labour shortage can be attributed to mainly inefficiency of agricultural management practices and labour migration to towns for economic reasons indicating that the farming system is not sustainable in terms of labour;

4) considering the direct return from animal production, most of the farms had very low gross margin with the current management system and this reduced the overall operating profit of farms. The low return from animal rearing was offset by the relatively high profit from crop production indicating the benefit of mixed farming system in sustaining agricultural production; and

5) each farm can have a wide range of optimized solutions mainly through introduction of improved technologies and subsequent redesigning of the farm managements.

In general, the findings of the current study indicate that it is worthwhile to assess the sustainability of agricultural production in different farming systems and agro-ecologies of Ethiopia. In addition, the combined effect of introducing improved agricultural technologies and subsequent reconfiguring the farm management is very crucial to increase and sustain agricultural production.

Inconvenientes y beneficios del comportamiento higiénico de la abeja de la miel (Apis mellifera L.) : una revisión
Leclercq, Gil ; Pannebakker, Bart ; Gengler, Nicolas ; Nguyen, Bach Kim ; Francis, Frédéric - \ 2017
Journal of Apicultural Research 56 (2017)4. - ISSN 0021-8839 - p. 366 - 375.
American foulbrood - Apis mellifera - chalkbrood - efficiency - hygienic behavior - Varroa destructor

The hygienic behavior of honey bee workers contributes to the social immunity of colonies. The ability of workers to detect and remove unhealthy or dead brood prevents the transmission of brood diseases inside the colony. Over the last five decades, this trait has been extensively studied and improved in several research and breeding programs. Given the strong interest for hygienic behavior, we here review the costs and benefits associated with this trait, extending preceding reviews on this subject from the late 1990s. Since the 1990s, there have been no major new insights on the efficiency of this behavior against American foulbrood and chalkbrood. However, the number of publications on hygienic behavior against the mite Varroa destructor has considerably increased, fueling the debate regarding the efficiency of hygienic behavior against this parasite. Breeding programs have shown that selection for a specific trait might also impact other traits. Thus, we also review the cost of trade-offs between hygienic behavior and other economically important traits for bee breeders. Overall, the benefits of hygienic behavior seem to largely outweigh its costs for both colonies and bee breeders.

Production efficiency of mussel bottom culture
Capelle, Jacob J. - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Aad Smaal; P.M.J. Herman, co-promotor(en): Jeroen Wijsman. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463430869 - 240
mussels - mussel culture - bottom culture - efficiency - population dynamics - culture techniques - biomass production - improvement - shellfish culture - aquaculture - mossels - mosselteelt - bodemcultuur - efficiëntie - populatiedynamica - kweektechnieken - biomassa productie - verbetering - schaal- en schelpdierenteelt - aquacultuur

Mussel bottom culture is an extensive type of aquaculture; it depends on natural resources for feed, seed and space. It consists of the translocation of seed from natural beds to designed culture areas, where mussel farmers try to improve production efficiency. Production efficiency is measured by the relative biomass production (RBP) expressed as units of biomass harvested from one unit of biomass seeded, it increases with mussel growth and decreases with mussel mortality. Mussel bottom culture makes use of nature and also depends on nature. Cultured mussels are subject to similar environmental factors that influence growth and mortality on natural mussel beds, with additional effects of anthropogenic factors. In this thesis we focus on dynamics of mussel beds and the impact and effectivity of culture activities on mussel production yield. The major objectives are stated as: (1) to better understand the population dynamics of subtidal mussel populations, (2) to analyze what factors determine production efficiency in mussel bottom culture and how this can be improved. On natural mussel beds mussels organise in patterns that enhance food delivery and resilience of the bed. On culture plots mussels are seeded in concentric seeding patterns. Seeding techniques concentrate mussels locally within the culture plot area, resulting in high local mussel densities; this increases competition and limits the spatial re-organisation of mussels in the bed. Consequently, seeding on culture plots is followed by a large size and density dependent seeding loss that ranges from about 40% for seed from fishery to 69% for smaller SMC seed. This loss was the major factor in determining the maximum RBP. Losses in the grow-out stage were substantially lower, a subsequent density dependent loss was found for smaller mussels (<30 mm), and a non-density dependent loss for larger mussels (>30 mm). Shore crab predation is an important factor contributing to the higher losses at seeding. The effect of shore crab predation on mussel biomass production is higher than expected from previous studies. In an experiment on an intertidal culture plot in the Oosterschelde (NL), we observed that shore crab predation peaks directly after seeding and accounted for 33% of the total losses within five weeks after seeding. Spatial patterns in the survival rates of natural mussel beds in the Wadden Sea show better seed survival in areas with intermediate salinity (mean annual salinity 17.5-22.5 mg l-1). This suggests that mussel survival is negatively related to sea star distribution, which is largely controlled by salinity. Natural beds that escape predation are found at lower salinities and mussels on these beds showed low growth rates, also because of a lower food quality in these areas. Mussel culture strongly affects the population dynamics of the subtidal mussel population, through relaying of mussels from natural mussel beds to culture plots. Culture plots are located in more saline regions of the Wadden Sea (mean annual salinity 25.8 mg l-1), compared to natural mussel beds. This activity increased mussel growth and survival because food quality on culture plots is high and predation is prevented. As a result, average biomass production is higher on culture plots than on natural mussel beds and this difference increases over time. A more efficient seed use on the available area, that can be obtained by reducing seeding losses will increase RBP, maximum biomass production and increases maximum profit. Our results suggest that this can be achieved by seeding homogeneously in low densities.

How to achieve resource use efficiency in integrated food and biobased value chains?
Annevelink, E. ; Gogh, J.B. van; Bartels, P.V. ; Broeze, J. ; Dam, J.E.G. van; Groot, J.J. ; Koenderink, N.J.J.P. ; Oever, M.J.A. van den; Snels, J.C.M.A. ; Top, J.L. ; Willems, D.J.M. - \ 2017
Wageningen : Wageningen Food & Biobased Research (Wageningen Food &amp; Biobased Research report 1720) - ISBN 9789463431163 - 23
resources - biobased economy - food chains - food biotechnology - biomass - change - sustainability - value chain analysis - efficiency - use efficiency - food - resource management - integrated systems - hulpbronnen - voedselketens - voedselbiotechnologie - biomassa - verandering - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - waardeketenanalyse - efficiëntie - gebruiksefficiëntie - voedsel - hulpbronnenbeheer - geïntegreerde systemen
Exergy analysis in industrial food processing
Zisopoulos, F.K. - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Remko Boom, co-promotor(en): Atze Jan van der Goot. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462578326 - 229
thermodynamics - energy - physical properties - food production - drying - food industry - efficiency - thermodynamica - energie - fysische eigenschappen - voedselproductie - drogen - voedselindustrie - efficiëntie

The sustainable provision of food on a global scale in the near future is a very serious challenge. This thesis focuses on the assessment and design of sustainable industrial food production chains and processes by using the concept of exergy which is an objective metric based on the first and second law of thermodynamics. Three case studies are presented, two on a chain level (industrial bread and mushroom production), and one on a process level (conceptual spray drying of a lactose solution). Furthermore, industrial food production chains are categorized as thermodynamic archetypes and general rules are derived for their sustainable design exergy-wise. Additional methodological aspects related to e.g. the impact of system boundaries, the allocation of exergy values to waste streams, and the influence of the selection of the environment of reference on the outcome of the analysis, are also discussed.

An updated generic architecture describingcompliance in Agri-Food Supply Chains : (D1.2.3)
Kruize, J.W. ; Robbemond, R.M. ; Verwaart, T. - \ 2016
Wageningen : LEI Wageningen UR (Report / LEI Wageningen UR 2016-061) - ISBN 9789462578289 - 21 p.
agro-industrial chains - food chains - food supply - computer software - efficiency - business economics - agro-industriële ketens - voedselketens - voedselvoorziening - efficiëntie - bedrijfseconomie
In this report a generic architecture is presented comprising an inventory of the most important actors, roles, processes and information that are relevant in the processes of standardisation, certification and compliance in Agri-Food Supply Chains. This architecture becomes part of an architectural framework. The architectural framework aims to reduce the paper -based administration by improving digitalisation of compliance processes and to enable a more efficient and effective data exchange in the field of compliance.
Natural genetic variation for regulation of photosynthesis response to light in Arabidopsis thaliana
Rooijen, R. van - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Maarten Koornneef, co-promotor(en): Mark Aarts; Jeremy Harbinson. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462578203 - 235 p.
arabidopsis thaliana - photosynthesis - genetic variation - light - efficiency - fotosynthese - genetische variatie - licht - efficiëntie

The efficiency of photosynthesis results from the composition and organization of the plant’s internal structural components as well as the capability of response to environmental fluctuations. This thesis aims at identifying the genetic loci that are regulating the (sub-) processes in photosynthetic acclimation to increased irradiance levels, in order to obtain the genetic information useful to breed for photosynthetic performance. It uses genome wide association studies (GWAS) to reveal which genetic loci are being exploited in nature for keeping good photosynthetic performances in natural conditions. Phenotypic variation among natural accessions in photosynthetic light use efficiency response to increased growth irradiance is related to its variation in genetics in order to identify the associated genetic loci. In Chapter 2 is described which light environment reveals most natural variation in photosynthetic performance and for which photosynthetic parameter this is. It shows different Arabidopsis accessions display different photosynthetic responses to various light environments, well relatable to genetic differences. A candidate gene list for the direct response to increased growth irradiance was revealed after performing genome wide association analysis. Chapter 3 elaborates on the genome wide association results by visualizing the dynamics of the associated genetic loci over the time course of the photosynthetic response to increased irradiance. It shows it is possible to simplify the complexity of photosynthetic physiology as well as the genetic analysis in such way to confirm the causal genes underlying the associated loci, by confirming this for the YELLOW SEEDLING 1 (YS1) gene, a gene encoding a Pentatrico-Peptide-Repeat (PPR) protein involved in RNA editing of plastid-encoded genes essential for photosystems I and II. Genetic variation for any trait can be on the transcriptional level or on the functional level. In Chapter 4, the gene regulation in three Arabidopsis accessions with contrasting photosynthesis efficiency responses to increased irradiance is studied. These differences in photosynthesis efficiency are associated to differences in activation extents of heat responsive genes as well as to differences in the presence of a gene activation pathway acting on membrane lipid remodelling, suggested to maintain balanced cellular phosphate concentrations. Chapter 5 confirms the significance of maintaining balanced cellular phosphate concentrations for photosynthesis efficiency responses to increased irradiance. It describes how genome wide association mapping and linkage mapping combine to reveal genetic epistatic interactions between PHOSPHATIDIC ACID PHOPSPHOHYDROLASE 2 (PAH2, phosphate metabolism gene) and ASPARAGINE SYNTHETASE 2 (ASN2, nitrogen metabolism gene), both acting in the delivery of orthophosphate in the chloroplast. In conclusion this thesis contributes new insights into the physiological and molecular pathways underlying photosynthesis responses to increased growth irradiances.

Performing drip irrigation by the farmer managed Seguia Khrichfa irrigation system, Morocco
Kooij, S. van der - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Charlotte de Fraiture; Margreet Zwarteveen, co-promotor(en): M. Kuper. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462577626 - 166 p.
trickle irrigation - irrigation systems - efficiency - morocco - druppelbevloeiing - irrigatiesystemen - efficiëntie - marokko

Drip irrigation is represented in literature and agricultural policies as a modern and water saving technology. Because this technology is often associated with ‘modern’ agriculture and development, it seems out-of-place in ‘traditional’ farmer managed irrigation systems (FMIS). Thinking along the binary modernity-tradition leaves little room for the possibility that drip irrigation and FMIS could come together in a meaningful way as they place FMIS and drip irrigation in two mutually exclusive representational categories. Yet, the water users from the Khrichfa Canal, part of the Ain Bittit Irrigation System, a ‘traditional’ FMIS in Northern Morocco, opt for ‘modern’ drip irrigation as technology of their choice. To explain this apparent contradiction this PhD thesis develops an approach to rethinking the performance of drip irrigation in the context of farmer managed irrigation systems. The question “how does drip irrigation perform?” guides this research. In irrigation engineering literature the performance of drip irrigation is centred around the notion of water use efficiency – the prime task that drip irrigation is supposed to fulfil. However, to understand drip irrigation in FMIS, a more processual and less prescriptive approach to performance is explored. Drawing on actor-network approaches, the thesis understands performance as “the art of ordering the relations and interactions between people and objects, a process of ordering which emerges from practice and which results in contingent, surprising outcomes.”

This study starts by ‘unpacking’ the efficiency of drip irrigation by exploring what efficiency means, how the strong link between drip irrigation and efficiency was constructed, and what this association of drip irrigation as an efficient technology does. Because of its renowned efficiency, drip irrigation introduction is stimulated in many countries. Yet, efficiency is not an uncontested term. From the academic debate on efficiency complexity, it is clear that efficiency terminology is scale and context specific. Rather than studying drip irrigation with a pre-defined scale of analysis, this thesis focuses on how efficiencies, and their assumptions about scales and context, are used in irrigation projects and descriptions of drip irrigation performance. This PhD study critically engages with questions about efficiency and searches for alternative ways of understanding performance. To understand how drip irrigation and FMIS can come together in meaningful ways, this PhD study does not only re-define the performance of drip irrigation but likewise re-thinks conceptualisations of FMIS. FMIS are approached as dynamic entities that continuously change – which allows to see the introduction of drip irrigation as yet another change, rather than a disruption of ‘tradition’.

The farmer managed Seguia Khrichfa in Northern Morocco is selected as a case study to understand how drip irrigation performs in a FMIS with a historical analysis. The Moroccan government stimulates the introduction of drip irrigation because this efficient technology addresses problems of groundwater depletion ànd supports a growth in agricultural production. In the Khrichfa area, several individual farmers have converted to drip irrigation and the water users organisation is planning for a collective drip irrigation system. The existing drip irrigation systems and the collective plans provided fertile ground for exploring how ‘modern’ drip irrigation and ‘traditional’ FMIS can go together. This thesis begins with a literature review on the efficiency of drip irrigation in Chapter 2. Chapter 3 is an analysis of what efficiencies do in the field, how efficiencies are used to re-allocate water in (drip) irrigation projects. In Chapter 4 and 5 alternative conceptualisations of performance are explored: in Chapter 4 by analysing the intimate relation between technologies and institutions, and their capacity to mutually shape each other, and in Chapter 5 the focus lies on understanding the performance of drip irrigation as emerging from the interactions between the technology and its (potential) user.

The literature review in Chapter 2 aims to understand the scientific basis for the expectations that drip irrigation is efficient with water. Efficiency studies underscore the need for drip irrigation as a device to counter water scarcity, groundwater depletion and competition over water and align with a modernization discourse – aiming at improvement and upgrading of irrigation. The efficiency of drip irrigation is constructed at very localized experimental stations with a wide variety of efficiency terms and definitions used by different research communities. Although the term efficiency gives the impression of unity, the studies that measure and define efficiency have remarkable differences in conceptualizing water balances and measuring water flows. However, the resulting efficiency numbers are treated as if they were comparable amongst each other. This results in a widely supported consensus that drip irrigation saves water. This creation of unity might be strategic for continuation of research practices and funding, but it says little about how drip irrigation will perform in the fields of farmers. The practices of farmers are left out of the experiments reviewed in literature. Besides local farming practices more ‘context’ is left out of the equations: with water-tight plastic borders all flows in the experiments are controllable. The research on the efficiency of drip irrigation is thus very technology-centred, i.e. the performance of the technology and its capacity to bring water efficiently to plants is attributed to the material objects.

Chapter 3 shows that efficiency numbers do have influence as they embed a promise of the creation of more water. Apparently previously ‘lost’ water would be captured, thus resulting in a water ‘gain’. This is not specific for drip irrigation – the promise of water ‘gains’ is also present in other irrigation technologies and modernization projects. For example, previous modernization projects in the Ain Bittit irrigation system, of which the Seguia Khrichfa is a secondary canal, focused on lining of the infrastructure in order to re-allocate the ‘saved’ water for drinking water to the city of Meknes. All modernization projects in Ain Bittit have been preceded or accompanied by a process of re-allocating yet-to-be saved water. For example, the many actors involved in the conversion to drip irrigation all claim that the water ‘gain’ would be theirs. As this is never openly discussed, it is only when projects are implemented that competition over the ‘saved’ water arises. Yet, this competition is not brought to the open and each actor claims the ‘saved’ water, resulting on multiple claims on the yet-to-be saved water. Within the irrigation system, the ‘saved’ water mixes with the rest of the flows in the basin. This makes it 1) impossible to know how much water is actually saved, and thus how much water could be re-distributed, and 2) invisible to others who actually uses the ‘saved’ water. Only silent actors in a powerless position – like the aquifer – lose out. Chapter 3 concludes with the suggestion that not measuring actual water gains is strategic because it de-politicises re-allocations, allowing several actors to appropriate the yet-to-be-saved water without confrontations.

Chapter 4 describes the performance of technology as co-defining the water distribution in an irrigation system, and its role in defining possible solutions. The technology has a function in co-shaping institutions, which forms also depend on the distributional questions that institutions aim to tackle. For drip irrigation, this means that the introduction of drip irrigation technology is shaped through and also provokes distributional questions. Which water users are in- or excluded from the system? What are legitimate reasons for accessing water? The introduction of drip irrigation brings with it discourses on efficiency, productivity and avoidance of waste – which shape the framing of distributional questions. Surprisingly, these questions do not lead to open conflicts in Khrichfa. The conclusions of Chapter 4 suggest that this is because technologies can play a role in de-politicizing change. Suggesting new technologies or drawing old technologies into new configurations allows actors to enforce changes in the irrigation system without anyone losing face. When difficult questions on in-or exclusion are defined as issues of efficiency and modernization – and thus as progress and the way forward – these are hard to openly oppose.

Chapter 5 explores socio-technical performances of drip irrigation in the Seguia Khrichfa area by approaching performance as emerging from practice. The positivity of drip irrigation (constructed through efficiency experiments in laboratories which travelled to agricultural policies and donor-led debates) radiates on drip irrigation users and the administration and works in the field to create identities and form alliances. In Khrichfa, drip irrigation contributes to a shift towards modern, entrepreneurial and clean agriculture, and strengthens the ties between the irrigation community and the State. These are performances of drip irrigation that come into being in wider networks in which the technology interacts. In other situations (at other moments, in interaction with other actors, another environment) drip irrigation could perform in different ways. In the most extreme cases, drip irrigation does not even have to be in place physically as an object to perform. Talking about drip irrigation, aligning with drip irrigation and its discourses of efficiency and modernity also performs. Yet, the socio-technical focus on processes of network ordering hints at the fragility of the performances of drip irrigation: actors need to actively keep the network they constructed in place to maintain identities and alliances. This understanding of performance also means that drip irrigation can perform in many ways, but this does not mean that these performances can be expected in other contexts. Likewise, one cannot expect that drip irrigation is always efficient. Drip irrigation only becomes efficient through practice, when actors, technology and the environment all work towards the goal of using water efficiently.

The general discussion concludes by answering the main research question on how drip irrigation performs. Drip irrigation performs as an efficient technology, which is often translated in irrigation policies as needing less water while increasing productivities. The suggestion that water is ‘saved’ that would otherwise be ‘lost’ creates a promise of water gains which can be re-distributed. Drip irrigation also performs as network builder and creator of identities. Both modern drip irrigation and notions of performance (such as efficiency) are strategic for de-politicizing re-allocation issues. Changing water allocations via efficiency arguments or transforming institutions via technologies is attractive as it silences opposition. This thesis also highlights how performance assessments – for example based on irrigation efficiency – perform (and are performed); they re-order the relations and interactions between people and objects. Likewise, FMIS, as a category to define irrigation systems perform. Any definition or categorisation implies certain possibilities or restrictions, and the water users of the Seguia Khrichfa know well how to use these in their favour. As implications of this research for the Moroccan agricultural policy, this study suggests that it is doubtful whether drip irrigation makes available the anticipated water, as the Moroccan government is not the only actor that claims access to the ‘saved’ water. Yet, this thesis suggests that drip irrigation does help farming communities to experience that they ‘count’ in modern agriculture – though other cheaper ways of attaining this could be possible. In addition, the suggestion is made to more explicitly measure multiple performances – to celebrate their differences rather than creating a suggestion of unity. Being open to the multiple performances of drip irrigation will help to explain for whom drip irrigation works and how, and at the costs of what. The thesis concludes with a personal reflection that drip irrigation and FMIS can very well go together, at the condition that both are re-conceptualized.

Grondstofefficiëntie in de zuivel-, varkensvlees-, aardappel- en suikerketen
Baltussen, W.H.M. ; Dolman, M.A. ; Hoste, R. ; Janssens, S.R.M. ; Reijs, J.W. ; Smit, A.B. - \ 2016
LEI Wageningen UR (Nota / LEI Wageningen UR 2016-013) - 85 p.
agro-industriële ketens - efficiëntie - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - melk - varkensvlees - aardappelen - suiker - productie - nederland - agro-industrial chains - efficiency - sustainability - milk - pigmeat - potatoes - sugar - production - netherlands
In opdracht van het ministerie van Economische Zaken en Topsector Agri & Food heeft LEIWageningen UR de state-of-the-art in kaart gebracht op het gebied van de duurzaamheidsprestatiesvoor vier belangrijke grondstoffen van de aardappel-, suiker-, varkensvlees- en zuivelketen. De viergrondstoffen zijn: land, water, energie en fosfaat. De focus in dit rapport ligt op de kansen enuitdagingen die er zijn op het gebied van efficiënter grondstofgebruik.
De P-benutting door het vee van melkveebedrijven, de impact van minimumwaarden en een tool voor verbetering
Oenema, J. ; Aarts, H.F.M. - \ 2015
Plant Research International (PRI) (PRI Rapport ) - 25 p.
cattle - dairy cattle - cattle feeding - phosphate - excretion - use efficiency - nutrient use efficiency - efficiency - feed conversion efficiency - rundvee - melkvee - rundveevoeding - fosfaat - excretie - gebruiksefficiëntie - nutriëntengebruiksefficiëntie - efficiëntie - voederconversievermogen
In 2013 was de P(benutting van de Nederlandse melkveestapel gemiddeld 30%. De benutting neemt de laatste twee decennia toe met ongeveer 0.25 procentpunt per jaar, met name door het beter presteren van melkkoeien en de afname van het aandeel jongvee. Om onder het plafond van 84.9 miljoen kg fosfaat(excretie te blijven zal een uitbreiding van de melkproductie met 10% gepaard moeten gaan met een verbetering van de benutting van de veestapel met 0.8 procentpunt; een uitbreiding met 20% of 30% verlangt een verbetering van respectievelijk 2.7 procentpunt en 4.5 procentpunt. Bij indeling van bedrijven in klassen, naar grondsoort en intensiteit (melk/ha), blijkt dat de 10% best scorende bedrijven een benutting realiseren die 5.4 tot 7.6 procentpunt hoger is dan die van de 10% slechts scorende. Als de 10%, 20% of 30% slechts scorende bedrijven gedwongen worden de minimum prestatie te realiseren van de resterende 90%, 80% of 70% leidt dit per stap tot een verbetering van 0.2 procentpunt; bij 30% dus tot 0.6 procentpunt. Besproken wordt de opzet van een tool waarmee de veehouder wordt geholpen de P(benutting te verbeteren.
Accuracy of sampling during mushroom cultivation
Baars, J.J.P. ; Hendrickx, P.M. ; Sonnenberg, A.S.M. - \ 2015
Wageningen : Wageningen UR (PPO/PRI report 2015-5) - 33 p.
mushrooms - edible fungi - cropping systems - sampling - agaricus bisporus - mushroom compost - efficiency - dry matter - crop yield - postharvest quality - paddestoelen - eetbare paddestoelen - teeltsystemen - bemonsteren - champignonmest - efficiëntie - droge stof - gewasopbrengst - kwaliteit na de oogst
Experiments described in this report were performed to increase the accuracy of the analysis of the biological efficiency of Agaricus bisporus strains. Biological efficiency is a measure of the efficiency with which the mushroom strains use dry matter in the compost to produce mushrooms (expressed as dry matter produced).
Fate of pharmaceuticals in full-scale source separated sanitation system
Butkovskyi, A. ; Hernandez Leal, L. ; Rijnaarts, H.H.M. ; Zeeman, G. - \ 2015
Water Research 85 (2015). - ISSN 0043-1354 - p. 384 - 392.
Anaerobic degradation - Black water - Grey water - Micropollutant removal - Pharmaceuticals - UASB reactor

Removal of 14 pharmaceuticals and 3 of their transformation products was studied in a full-scale source separated sanitation system with separate collection and treatment of black water and grey water. Black water is treated in an up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor followed by oxygen-limited autotrophic nitrification-denitrification in a rotating biological contactor and struvite precipitation. Grey water is treated in an aerobic activated sludge process. Concentration of 10 pharmaceuticals and 2 transformation products in black water ranged between low μg/l to low mg/l. Additionally, 5 pharmaceuticals were also present in grey water in low μg/l range. Pharmaceutical influent loads were distributed over two streams, i.e. diclofenac was present for 70% in grey water, while the other compounds were predominantly associated to black water. Removal in the UASB reactor fed with black water exceeded 70% for 9 pharmaceuticals out of the 12 detected, with only two pharmaceuticals removed by sorption to sludge. Ibuprofen and the transformation product of naproxen, desmethylnaproxen, were removed in the rotating biological contactor. In contrast, only paracetamol removal exceeded 90% in the grey water treatment system while removal of other 7 pharmaceuticals was below 40% or even negative. The efficiency of pharmaceutical removal in the source separated sanitation system was compared with removal in the conventional sewage treatment plants. Furthermore, effluent concentrations of black water and grey water treatment systems were compared with predicted no-effect concentrations to assess toxicity of the effluent. Concentrations of diclofenac, ibuprofen and oxazepam in both effluents were higher than predicted no-effect concentrations, indicating the necessity of post-treatment. Ciprofloxacin, metoprolol and propranolol were found in UASB sludge in μg/g range, while pharmaceutical concentrations in struvite did not exceed the detection limits.

Markt rijp voor betaalbaar kasdek met hoge isolatiewaarde en lichttransmissie : het Nieuwe Telen nog energiezuiniger maken
Rodenburg, J. ; Kempkes, F.L.K. - \ 2015
Onder Glas 12 (2015)6/7. - p. 34 - 35.
glastuinbouw - beglazing - bekleding, bouw - isolatie - transmissie - schermen - efficiëntie - folie - energiebesparing - lichtdoorlating - kastechniek - greenhouse horticulture - glazing - cladding - isolation - transmission - blinds - efficiency - foil - energy saving - light transmission - greenhouse technology
Precies een jaar geleden startte Wageningen UR Glastuinbouw en een consortium van bedrijven met de bouw van een nieuwe, energiezuinige kas. Sleutelcomponent is een ventileerbaar spouwdek dat bestaat uit helder glas waaronder een duurzaam diffuus folie is aangebracht. Dit najaar maken betrokkenen de balans op, maar nu al lijkt de innovatie een aanwinst voor Het Nieuwe Telen. Het systeem oogt professioneel en bezoekers reageren positief.
Heterogeneity in genetic variation and energy sink relationships for residual feed intake across research stations and countries
Tempelman, R. ; Spurlock, D.M. ; Coffey, M.P. ; Veerkamp, R.F. ; Armentano, L. ; Weigel, K. ; Haas, Y. de; Staples, C.R. ; Connor, E.E. ; Hanigan, M.D. ; Lu, Y.F. ; Haar, M.J. van de - \ 2015
Journal of Dairy Science 98 (2015)3. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 2013 - 2026.
random regression-models - dairy-cattle - lactation performance - efficiency - cows - selection - supplementation - heritability - components - variance
Our long-term objective is to develop breeding strategies for improving feed efficiency in dairy cattle. In this study, phenotypic data were pooled across multiple research stations to facilitate investigation of the genetic and nongenetic components of feed efficiency in Holstein cattle. Specifically, the heritability of residual feed intake (RFI) was estimated and heterogeneous relationships between RFI and traits relating to energy utilization were characterized across research stations. Milk, fat, protein, and lactose production converted to megacalories (milk energy; MilkE), dry matter intakes (DMI), and body weights (BW) were collected on 6,824 lactations from 4,893 Holstein cows from research stations in Scotland, the Netherlands, and the United States. Weekly DMI, recorded between 50 to 200 d in milk, was fitted as a linear function of MilkE, BW0.75, and change in BW (¿BW), along with parity, a fifth-order polynomial on days in milk (DIM), and the interaction between this polynomial and parity in a first-stage model. The residuals from this analysis were considered to be a phenotypic measure of RFI. Estimated partial regression coefficients of DMI on MilkE and on BW0.75 ranged from 0.29 to 0.47 kg/Mcal for MilkE across research stations, whereas estimated partial regression coefficients on BW0.75 ranged from 0.06 to 0.16 kg/kg0.75. Estimated partial regression coefficients on ¿BW ranged from 0.06 to 0.39 across stations. Heritabilities for country-specific RFI were based on fitting second-stage random regression models and ranged from 0.06 to 0.24 depending on DIM. The overall heritability estimate across all research stations and all DIM was 0.15±0.02, whereas an alternative analysis based on combining the first- and second-stage model as 1 model led to an overall heritability estimate of 0.18±0.02. Hence future genomic selection programs on feed efficiency appear to be promising; nevertheless, care should be taken to allow for potentially heterogeneous variance components and partial relationships between DMI and other energy sink traits across environments when determining RFI.
Perspectives on the distribution of fresh food in emerging metropolises: the cases of Mexico City and Cairo
Waldhauer, N. ; Burgh, M. van der; Vorst, J.G.A.J. van der; Bing, X. ; Scheer, F.P. - \ 2015
Wageningen : Wageningen UR - Food & Biobased Research (Report / Wageningen UR Food &amp; Biobased Research 1529) - ISBN 9789462573642 - 56
voedsel - distributie - voedseldistributieprogramma's - ketenmanagement - voedselketens - logistiek - efficiëntie - stedelijke gebieden - mexico - voedselzekerheid - voedselkwaliteit - voedselverspilling - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - food - distribution - food distribution programs - supply chain management - food chains - logistics - efficiency - urban areas - food security - food quality - food wastage - sustainability
The report consists of four main chapters. In chapter 2 a theoretical framework of urban food distribution is developed based on earlier projects, a literature study and interviews. This framework underlines the main elements of urban food distribution and serves as a theoretical outline for the following case studies and recommendations for improvement. Chapter 3 describes the current situation of fresh food distribution in the two chosen case studies Mexico City and Cairo using the framework of chapter 2 as a reference. Chapter 4 presents the conclusions from the case studies comparing the current situation of the respective urban fresh food distribution networks, assessing the performance of the system and stating the major challenges in both cities. Recommendations for intervention are given in chapter 5 taking into account the conclusions from the case studies, urban distribution initiatives and projects in Western European cities and expert interviews. Chapter 6 gives an outlook into further research.
Voorsorteren op quotumloos tijdperk
Doornewaard, G.J. - \ 2015
Nieuwsbrief Koeien & Kansen (2015)41. - p. 2 - 2.
melkveehouderij - agrarische bedrijfsvoering - melkproductie - kosten per eenheid - optimalisatie - efficiëntie - melkproductiekosten - melkprijzen - dairy farming - farm management - milk production - unit costs - optimization - efficiency - milk production costs - milk prices
Frank en Ilona Post produceren in Nieuweroord (Drenthe) met 135 koeien bijna 1,2 mln. kg melk op zo’n 44 ha cultuurgrond. Het bedrijf is met ruim 27.000 kg melk per ha behoorlijk intensief. De afgelopen jaren was één van de doelstellingen van de maatschap om de kosten en de financiering per kg melk te verlagen.
Method Development to Increase Protein Enrichment During Dry Fractionation of Starch-Rich Legumes
Pelgrom, P.J.M. ; Boom, R.M. ; Schutyser, M.A.I. - \ 2015
Food Bioprocess Technology 8 (2015)7. - ISSN 1935-5130 - p. 1495 - 1502.
air-classified protein - functional-properties - flours - bodies - seeds - pea - efficiency - yield - food
A facile method was developed to establish milling settings that optimally separate starch granules from protein bodies and cell wall fibres for starch-rich legumes. Optimal separation was obtained for pea, bean, lentil and chickpea when the particle size distribution curve of flour and isolated starch granules overlap maximally. This outcome was based on scanning electron microscopy, protein content of the fine fraction and particle size distribution curves. Milling settings differed between legumes due to variances in seed hardness and starch granule size. The protein content of the fine fraction was legume specific as well and could be explained by differences in particle density, seed hardness, starch granule size, fat content and flour dispersibility.
Tunnels for toads = Hoe effectief zijn paddentunnels?
Ottburg, F.G.W.A. ; Grift, E.A. van der - \ 2015
Alterra, Wageningen-UR
padden - universitair onderzoek - migratie - habitatverbindingszones - monitoring - efficiëntie - diergedrag - wildpassages - toads - university research - migration - habitat corridors - efficiency - animal behaviour - wildlife passages
Het aanleggen van paddentunnels onder een weg helpt padden bij het oversteken van anders dodelijke wegen. Maar als je wilt weten hoe effectief ze zijn, moet je niet alleen kijken hoeveel dieren de tunnels gebruiken, maar ook hoeveel dieren dat niet doen. Fabrice Ottburg en Edgar van der Grift leggen het belang van hun onderzoek uit in een filmpje.
Deriving estimates of individual variability in genetic potentials of performance traits for 3 dairy breeds, using a model of lifetime nutrient partitioning
Phuong, H.N. ; Boer, I.J.M. de; Schmidely, P. ; Friggens, N.C. ; Martin, O. - \ 2015
Journal of Dairy Science 98 (2015)1. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 618 - 632.
repeated reproductive-cycles - milk-yield - lactating cow - holstein cows - body-size - cattle - parameters - efficiency - fertility - genotype
This study explored the ability of an existing lifetime nutrient partitioning model for simulating individual variability in genetic potentials of dairy cows. Generally, the model assumes a universal trajectory of dynamic partitioning of priority between life functions and genetic scaling parameters are then incorporated to simulate individual difference in performance. Data of 102 cows including 180 lactations of 3 breeds: Danish Red, Danish Holstein, and Jersey, which were completely independent from those used previously for model development, were used. Individual cow performance records through sequential lactations were used to derive genetic scaling parameters for each animal by calibrating the model to achieve best fit, cow by cow. The model was able to fit individual curves of body weight, and milk fat, milk protein, and milk lactose concentrations with a high degree of accuracy. Daily milk yield and dry matter intake were satisfactorily predicted in early and mid lactation, but underpredictions were found in late lactation. Breeds and parities did not significantly affect the prediction accuracy. The means of genetic scaling parameters between Danish Red and Danish Holstein were similar but significantly different from those of Jersey. The extent of correlations between the genetic scaling parameters was consistent with that reported in the literature. In conclusion, this model is of value as a tool to derive estimates of genetic potentials of milk yield, milk composition, body reserve usage, and growth for different genotypes of cow. Moreover, it can be used to separate genetic variability in performance between individual cows from environmental noise.
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