The Right Varieties for Successful Baking
Agroscope researchers are investigating which grain varieties are best suited to backing Swiss Christmas cookies (Guetzli) or bread. The Swiss wheat variety ‘Dilago’ was specially bred for baking Guetzli.


New Merlot Clones for the Swiss Certification Sector
Five Merlot clones bred in Switzerland are currently being distributed by the certification sector. A multiyear trial conducted by Agroscope in Gudo (Canton of Ticino) has made it possible to compare them with French and Italian reference clones and to highlight their very good performances.


Global Warming Causes Changes in Insect Fauna
How has the distribution of insects in Switzerland changed over the past 40 years? The range of many species has expanded, while that of a similar number has contracted. In particular, cold-adapted species have lost ground. These are the findings published in the journal “Nature Communications”.


Beneficial Soil Fungi for Sustainable Plant Production
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are important for healthy soils and crops. A pan-European study shows that plant-protection products adversely affect these fungi, reducing their ability to supply plants with phosphorus via their roots.


Healthy Soil – the Foundation for a Productive Agricultural Sector
December 5th is World Soil Day. Only healthy soils guarantee high yields over the long term, which is why Agroscope researchers are focusing on this ecosystem.


Two New Varieties of Birdsfoot Trefoil Recommended
Birdsfoot trefoil and sainfoin are used in mixtures for perennial hay meadows and for tannin-containing fodder. Agroscope is adding two new cultivars of birdsfoot trefoil to the ‘List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants’, whilst there is no change in the case of sainfoin.


For Higher Yields: Breeding Plants that Cooperate
A simple breeding experiment, combined with genetic analysis, can rapidly uncover genes that promote cooperation and higher yields of plant populations.


The November 2022 agroscope magazine is online
The Agroscope Centre of Excellence for Raw-Milk Products investigated the popularity of Vacherin Fribourgeois PDO cheese. Read about this and many more studies in the latest issue of the magazine.


Effectively Reducing Nitrogen Surpluses
A comparison of different methods of winter-wheat fertilisation with nitrogen showed that nitrogen surpluses can be significantly reduced by means of site-specific variable-rate nitrogen fertilisation.


Direct Payments Bolster Family Employment on the Farm
Employment in the agricultural sector is declining in many European countries, especially in livestock farming. Direct payments can counter this trend and lead to the employment of more – especially female – family members on the farm.


Swiss Food Week: Plant Foods in Focus
The Swiss Food Week (14–18 November) revolves around plant proteins. Agroscope will be using the event to survey consumers online about plant foods and to introduce the ‘HybPiKäs’ project.


Mountain Milk Production with Dual-Purpose Cows: Outdated Tradition or Modern Moneyspinner?
Although milk-production oriented (MPO) cow breeds have also become established in the mountain region, farms with the dual-purpose ‘Original Simmental’ breed are proving to be economically viable, with lower costs and higher direct payments making up for lower revenues from milk.


Researching Together for a Healthy Diet
Agroscope and Zurich University of Applied Sciences ZHAW are stepping up their cooperation in food research and have signed a memorandum of understanding.


Rethinking the Use of Waterlogged Wet Arable Land
Many tile drainage systems on arable land are in need of renewal. Cantons and stakeholders will now be given a decision-making tool enabling them to assess such areas in detail and to find sustainable solutions.


Measuring Protein Digestibility in the Laboratory while Reducing Animal Testing
Agroscope has developed a method that can reliably measure the protein digestibility of different foods in the laboratory. This opens up promising prospects in nutritional research and reduces the need for complex human and animal trials.


Agroscope Capsule Collects Gut Microbiome
Researchers from Agroscope have developed a capsule which can take a gut sample unobtrusively from a live pig. This animal-friendly invention has revolutionary implications for microbiome research.


Dairy Cows: Swiss Farms Surveyed on Drying-off Practice
High milk yields before drying-off increase the risk of udder infections during the dry period. An online survey highlights what drying-off methods are currently used and how farmers rate the ‘incomplete milking’ approach for reducing milk yield.


Tall and Golden Oat Grass: Few New Good Varieties
Tall oat grass and golden oat grass are typical hay-meadow grasses that are also suitable for forage mixtures. Of the four tall and three golden oat grass varieties tested, only one new variety of tall oat grass is likely to make it onto the List of Recommended Varieties.


Noninvasive Measuring Methods for Pigs
The PIGWEB Project’s large-scale trial was an im-portant step in the development of a noninvasive method for measuring the body composition of pigs.


How Do Sound Waves Affect Plants and Microorganisms?
Plants and microorganisms can perceive and respond to sound waves. In a review of the literature, Agroscope analysed various publications on this topic. The studies show that sound can lead to positive effects on physiology in the form of improved growth, development and disease resistance.