IFA Podcasts

Listen to IFA’s podcasts below or find them on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify where you can also subscribe to future episodes.


20 September 2021

David Powlson, Lawes Agricultural Trust Fellow at Rothamsted Research and Joachim Lammel, VP of Sustainability and Strategic Research at Yara Farming Solutions talked to IFA Chief Scientist Dr. Achim Dobermann about soil health and carbon sequestration. Find out why interest in soil health is growing, how it can be measured, what can be done to improve it and the potential of soil to capture carbon from the atmosphere.

About the guest speakers

David Powlson

Dr. Joachim Lammel

David Powlson is emeritus professor and Lawes Trust Senior Fellow at Rothamsted Research, from which he retired in 2006. His previous work at Rothamsted was to lead research on carbon cycling. His research interests include the dynamics of organic carbon in soil and the interactions between land management and climate change. He is currently contributing to projects on carbon cycling and the use of biomass crops for energy generation.

Dr. Joachim Lammel is Vice President of Sustainability and Strategic Research at Yara Farming Solutions. Mr. Lammel’s previous positions at Yara include Vice President R&D Global Initiatives and Head of Product and Application. Before joining Yara Dr. Lammel worked as a Senior Scientist at the Federal Agricultural Research Centre Braunschweig, Germany. He holds a M.Sc. in Agronomy and a Ph.D. in Crop Nutrition from University of Giessen.


12 July 2021

Michael McLaughlin, Professor at the University of Adelaide, Australia and Ramesh Raliya, General Manager and Head of R&D at IFFCO's Nano Biotechnology Research Centre, India sat down with IFA Chief Scientist Achim Dobermann to discuss the future of smarter fertilizers and developments in fertilizer technology, including the potential and challenges for nano-technology in crop nutrition.

About the guest speakers

Michael McLaughlin

Ramesh Raliya

Dr. Mike McLaughlin is a Professor in the School of Agriculture Food and Wine and Director of the Mosaic-sponsored University of Adelaide Fertiliser Technology Research Centre (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/fertiliser/). Mike gained his B.Sc. from the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland, a M.Agr.Sc from the University of Reading (UK) and his Ph.D. from the University of Adelaide (Australia). With research interests in soil/fertilizer chemistry and crop nutrition, he has published more than 350 research papers dealing with fertilizer chemistry, soil fertility, crop nutrition and fertilizer contaminants and holds several patents covering novel fertilizer formulations.

Dr. Ramesh Raliya is the General Manager (Research and Development) at the Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO), India, and visiting scientist at the Washington University in St. Louis, USA. Ramesh received his Ph.D. from the Central Arid Zone Research Institute of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and his M.Sc. from the Department of Botany, Jai Narain Vyas University, India. Ramesh’s research expertise is in product and technology development with the aim of reducing fertilizer runoff while improving sustainable agriculture and he has invented processes for synthesizing novel inorganic and organic nanoforms for plant nutrition.


29 June 2021

Munir Rusan, Professor at Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) and Hillel Magen, VP Agronomy at ICL Fertilizers and Director at the International Potash institute (IPI) sat down with IFA Deputy Director-General, Patrick Heffer, about the benefits and potential of fertigation for improving nutrient and water use efficiency, increasing farmers’ incomes, growing crops on marginal land and ensuring consistently high yields.

About the guest speakers

Munir Rusan

Hillel Magen

Munir Rusan is Professor of Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition at the Jordan University of Science and Technology, where he served as a Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture for several years. Munir Rusan worked previously as Consulting Director for the International Potash Institute and the International Plant Nutrition Institute.

Hillel Magen is Vice President of Agronomy at ICL Fertilizers, a company headquartered in Israel, that produces potash, phosphate and specialty fertilizers, including water-soluble fertilizers, an important fertilizer segment for fertigation. Hillel Magen is also Director of the International Potash Institute in Switzerland.


19 May 2021

Simon Attwood, former Head of Conservation at WWF Singapore, and IFA Chief Scientist, Achim Dobermann, explore the relationship between fertilizers and biodiversity. Discover how farming and fertilizers can affect biodiversity, the importance of sustainable intensification to help avoid land conversion and how nutrient management can protect biodiversity.

About the guest speakers

Dr Simon Attwood

Dr Achim Dobermann

Dr Simon Attwood is an expert in land conservation and management. He has helped to design and deliver the Australian Government’s Environmental Stewardship Program and more recently worked on projects in South East Asia and the Pacific to improve ecosystem services for rural community development and biodiversity conservation. Simon led the Ecological Intensification of Farming Systems team at Bioversity International, where he also co-developed the Agrobiodiversity Index, and was most recently Director of Conservation with WWF Singapore, where he worked on a range of conservation and sustainability challenges in South East Asia.

Dr Achim Dobermann is a soil scientist and agronomist with over 30 years work experience in all world regions. His main interests lie in science and technology solutions for food security and sustainable management of the world’s major agricultural systems. After completing leadership roles at Rothamsted Research and the International Rice Research Institute he now works as IFA’s Chief Scientist and in other strategic science advisory roles.

23 March 2021

Manish Raizada, Professor in the Department of Plant Agriculture, University of Guelph and Marcus Meadows-Smith, CEO of BioConsortia talk with IFA’s Deputy Director-General, Patrick Heffer, about the benefits and potential of Nitrogen-fixing microbials as a tool available to farmers to improve plant nutrition.

About the guest speakers

Manish N. Raizada

Meadows-Smith Marcus

Manish N. Raizada received his B.Sc. from the University of Western Ontario (Genetics) and Ph.D. from Stanford University (Plant Molecular Genetics). He held fellowship positions at The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre in Mexico City (Cereal Genomics) and at Caltech (Chemical Engineering). He is currently a Professor and the International Relations Officer in the Department of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph, Canada. The focus of the Raizada Lab is to develop low cost technologies that reduce the use of nitrogen fertilizers and pesticides to grow corn and other crops including legumes, replacing them with beneficial microbes and the use of biosensors, with a focus on North Ame rica, sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Meadows-Smith Marcus holds a degree in Biological Sciences, Genetics from the University of Birmingham, United Kingdom and is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program. He is currently CEO of BioConsortia, a discoverer of microbial crop protection and crop enhancement products. Prior to that, he turned around the biopesticide business AgraQuest Inc. over a four-year timeframe, signing partnership agreements between a bio-ag company and several big agchemical giants, culminating in Marcus’ company being acquired by Bayer CropScience for over $400 million. Following Bayer’s acquisition of AgraQuest, he became head of biologics for Bayer CropScience. Previously, Meadows-Smith had a 14-year career at Chemtura Corporation.

15 February 2021

IFA Chief Scientist Dr. Achim Dobermann sat down with SPRPN Chair Dr. Tom Bruulsema and member Dr. Pytrik Reidsma to find out more about the New Paradigm, including some of the key issues the Panel identified that need better solutions, and some it's main objectives, from nutrient recovery and recycling to nutrition-sensitive agriculture.

About the guest speakers

Tom Bruulsema

Pytrik Reidsma

Tom Bruulsema Based in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, Tom Bruulsema is Chief Scientist with Plant Nutrition Canada, working with industry, environmental, and scientific groups to lead agricultural service providers in advancing sustainability. He has served for over 25 years with industry-supported science organizations, leading and contributing to projects on the interactions of crop nutrition with health-functional foods, greenhouse gas emissions, air quality, and eutrophication in Lake Erie. Recent achievements include contributions to nutrient stewardship certification programs in the United States and Canada, and to international initiatives in sustainable management of nitrogen and phosphorus.

Dr. Pytrik Reidsma is Associate Professor at Plant Production Systems, Wageningen University. Her work focuses on sustainability and resilience of farming systems. She has expertise in integrated assessment of agricultural systems, considering impacts on different dimensions of sustainable development (economic, environmental, social), considering different drivers (climate change, policy, markets, technological development), at multiple scales (crop, farm, region, continent; with a focus on the farm level), using a range of methods (statistical analyses, crop modelling, bio-economic farm modelling, Geographic Information Systems, agent-based modelling and participatory approaches).



24 November 2020

Listen to IFA Chief Scientist Dr. Achim Dobermann discuss biostimulants with guests Patrick du Jardin, Senior Scientist, Professor of Plant Biology, Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech, University of Liège, and Prem Warrior, Chief Operating Officer, Valagro, in IFA’s first ever podcast!

About the guest speakers

Patrick du Jardin

Prem Warrior

Professor Patrick du Jardin is Senior Scientist, Professor of Plant Biology at Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech, University of Liège since 1996, of which he was Dean of faculty in the period 2007-2009. He is an expert in plant physiology and nutrition and his current research is focused on the action of microbial and non-microbial biostimulants on crop plants. He was chairman of the scientific committee of the 4th world congress on the Agricultural uses of Biostimulants. Patrick has a long-standing expertise in the risk assessment of agricultural technologies and was vice-chair of the EFSA GMO panel between 2012 and 2015. He has also been a member of the ethics committee of the French Institutes INRA and Cirad.

Dr. Prem Warrior is the Chief Operating Officer at Valagro, a leading company in the biostimulants space. Previously, he was a Senior Regional Advisor on the Agricultural Development team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Seattle. He concurrently served as a Senior Program Officer and the Team Leader for the Postharvest & Markets group at the Gates foundation. Prem has a PhD in Plant Pathology/Nematology and an MBA in general business. He has published more than 70 scientific peer-reviewed publications, has over 80 international patents and has been associated with the discovery and development of several agricultural products including insecticide, nematicide, plant growth regulators and biostimulants.