EXPLORE THE DATA ECOSYSTEM
SolACE's overarching goal is to help European agriculture facing the challenge to deal with more frequent combined limitations of water and nutrients in the coming decades, through the design of novel crop genotypes and agroecosystem management innovations to improve water and nutrient (i.e. N and P) use efficiency. To achieve this goal, SolACE will focus its activities on three major European crops - potato, bread and durum wheat - and will identify the (i) optimum combinations of above- and below-ground traits for improving resource use efficiency, (ii) best-performing genotypes under combined water and N or P stresses and (iii) novel practices that make better use of plant-plant and plant-microbe interactions to access water, N and P resources in conventional, organic and conservation agriculture.
SolACE will implement a double interactive innovation loop, based on agroecosystem management and breeding strategies, and will imply the engagement of diverse end-users, across the production chain, from farmers and farm advisors to NGOs, SMEs and larger industries in the agri-business sector, through the SolACE consortium and a range of stakeholders' events. The tested innovations will include crop genotype mixtures, legume-based crop rotations and cover crops, microbial inoculants, as well as improved decision support systems and hybrids or products from genomic selection and participatory evolutionary breeding schemes.
SolACE will implement complementary approaches, from data mining, modelling, phenotyping in high throughput platforms and field conditions, to experiments in research stations and farmers' networks in contrasted pedo-climatic zones. Through the co-design and co-assessment with the end-users of the selected novel breeding and management strategies to increase the overall system resource use efficiency, the findings of SolACE will be deemed acceptable and readily available for dissemination to a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including policy-makers.