Wallaces Farmer

Multiple studies show yield & ROI advantages of Pivot Bio microbial nitrogen

Multiple academic and industry studies show Pivot Bio products consistently result in higher yields and greater ROI while decreasing nitrate leaching in soils.

May 17, 2023

4 Min Read
Yield & ROI Advantages of Pivot Bio Microbial Nitrogen
Submitted by Pivot Bio

Multiple academic and industry studies show the market’s first commercially available microbial nitrogen consistently results in higher yields and a greater return on investment than traditional synthetic fertilizers across a variety of growing conditions.

In 2019, Pivot Bio PROVEN® debuted to great acclaim, finally offering farmers a microbial source of corn nitrogen that won’t runoff in severe weather or leach into the soil. Since then, the agriscience company has debuted Pivot Bio RETURN®, a nitrogen product for small grain crops, Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40, a higher-performing iteration of the popular corn product, and on-seed options for both Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 and Pivot Bio RETURN®.

The company has partnered with preeminent U.S. research institutions that are recognized globally for their agricultural innovation including Iowa State University, the University of Illinois, Purdue University, the University of Georgia and more. Industry groups also have partnered with Pivot Bio. A Precision Planting study found that corn treated with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 had a nearly 28 bu/A advantage over corn that solely received synthetic nitrogen.

University of Georgia researchers discovered that corn grown with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 had more mass—with test bushels weighing as much as 3.2 pounds more than their untreated counterparts—as well as a consistent yield advantage.

When the Standard Grower Rate of 250 lbs./A of synthetic nitrogen was reduced by 20 lbs./A, PROVEN® 40 replaced the synthetic nitrogen and increased corn yields by +4 bu/A. When PROVEN® 40 was applied to the Standard Grower Rate of 250 lbs./A, yields improved by +9 bu/A. PROVEN® 40 outperformed the nontreated check at the 210 lbs./A nitrogen application rate and was only 1 bu/A less than the yield achieved with the Standard Grower Rate of 250 lbs./A. Similar results were observed in 2021 at this location with Pivot Bio PROVEN®.

Strikingly Different Growing Conditions Tested

A 2021-­­­­2022 study by Barker Research and Consulting, LLC., showed Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 remains effective even in drought-like conditions.

The lack of precipitation in 2021 likely limited the ability of corn plants to fully benefit from the biomass and nutrient uptake advantages established with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 OS. Drought conditions were severe enough in 2021 that abandonment of the research site was considered for several weeks.

In 2022, when growing conditions were more ideal, the 160 Lbs./A nitrogen rate plus PROVEN® 40 OS maximized yields at 264 Bu/A, which was 9 Bu/A higher than with the 200 Lbs./A nitrogen rate commonly used by farmers in this region.

Decreased Nitrate Leaching on Corn

Researchers at Iowa State University used a steel box mesocosm system to precisely measure rates of nitrate leaching and nitrous oxide emissions. A total of 36 replicated soil blocks were used to test Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 and a nontreated, controlled check across three nitrogen rates including 110, 150, 190 lbs. of nitrogen per acre. Across all rates, corn treated with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 had substantially lower rates of nitrate leaching than the untreated checks.

Meanwhile, scientists at the University of Illinois determined that when combined with a carbon additive, corn treated with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 could increase its yield advantage to about 11 bushels an acre.

Applying a carbon additive in conjunction with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 supplies the Pivot Bio microbe with a carbon-rich food source while the crop is still young. This carbon additive likely enhances the capacity of PROVEN® 40 to fix nitrogen from the atmosphere early in the growing season and return that nitrogen to the developing crop. Then, as the crop matures, Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 will utilize root exudates from the corn plant as a food source and continue to provide nitrogen to the crop.

Increased Macronutrient Uptake & Greater Biomass

A study by North Carolina State University showed that corn grown with Pivot Bio PROVEN® 40 produced greater nitrogen, potassium and phosphorous uptake—and in turn, crops with greater biomass—than the untreated check.

By harnessing the nitrogen-producing power of microbes latent in our soil, Pivot Bio can help farmers develop a nitrogen management plan that is not only good for the environment but excellent for their bottom lines. Product performance will vary and depend on weather, soil, and other farming conditions. Growers are encouraged to discuss optimal use with sales representatives or agronomists.

For the full Performance Portfolio click here.

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