Use of alternative oleiferous plants with high polyunsaturated fatty acid content in crop rotation, functional use of seed, oil and secondary products in Slovenia (goal oriented research project)
(1.10.2011 - 30.9.2014).
The project was developed in cooperation with the Slovenia Institute for Hop and Brewing and Emona Nutrition Research and Development Department for the period from 1 October 2011 to 30 September 2014. It is a goal oriented research project and it includes comprehensive research on the feasibility of introducing crops with higher unsaturated fatty acid content (flax and camelina) into the crop rotation as the main or supplementary crop that would enrich the crop rotation in Slovene fields, the use of seed and cakes for animal feed (laying hens and fattening pigs) and their use as a raw material for strings in hop production.
The project includes all the required items from the tender Production of alternative crops in changed climate. With regard to the modest crop rotation and taking into account the increased frequency of periods of drought, and on the basis of appropriately planned field tests in different areas of Slovenia and in different soils, we will try to determine the best species of industrial hemp, flax and camelina for our growing conditions and refine the growing techniques, while leaning on the existing research from Slovenia and elsewhere.
The basis of the research will be field tests in several locations. The crop from these field tests will serve as the raw material for chemical analysis and in determination of nutritional value for animal feed. On the basis of agronomical and chemical results and nutritional tests we will be able to determine the species, which are best for production in our conditions, and improve the technological instructions for growing. The hemp stalks will be used in the fibre production, fibre analysis, and spinning of rope, which will be analysed and tested in hop production during the third year of the project.
The aim of the project is to establish the production of traditional crops in the Republic of Slovenia, namely, increase the production of flax, industrial hemp and camelina. Agronomic and economic parameters of flax and hemp production will provide more relevant and accurate information to future growers.
In nutritional tests on animals we will test the influence on the quality of animal fat as an independent source of omega-3 in the animal feed, and as a supplement or in combination.
Taking into account that the priority of agriculture is to produce food and animal feed, we will study the crop and value of the seed, and the possibilities of including flax, camelina and industrial hemp into the animal feed (laying hens and fattening pigs) for all three studied species of oleiferous plants (seed and cake). The results will provide guidelines for these omega-3 rich raw materials in the feed of other species and categories of farm animals (pigs, cattle, etc.). The chemical analyses of seed from different species of oleiferous plants, grown in different areas, will also provide information to the pharmaceutical industry for further research in their field.
In accordance with the conditions of the tender we will emphasise the optimal transfer of knowledge into practice.