The geography and geochemical composition of the soil determines the % of Nickel (Ni) in plants. But what is Nickel?
Nickel (like iron) can be introduced into the human body through food. Nickel is a very widespread element in the environment because: it is a fundamental constituent of many metal alloys (steel); it is a volatile element, therefore it can be inhaled through pulmonary ventilation; it can represent a pollutant of groundwater and soil.
Some plants have a tendency to absorb Nickel (Ni) from pesticides, air, soil and fertilizers used for their growth.
Using hydroponic or aquaponic techniques, plants can grow without soil or in the open-air reducing the amount of Nickel (Ni) retained.
As long as a plant grows, higher is the amount of Nickel (Ni) retained in it. Therefore, it is advisable to harvest food crops rich in Nickel as soon as possible in order to avoid the retention of Nickel (Ni) in abundance.
This is only one of many precautions to be taken.
Some tips and tricks for growers and their hydroponics companies:
For less Nickel (Ni) retention in crops, growers should take corrective measures for their hydroponic farms in order to have a higher quality production of plants/cultures on a large scale:
– Plants should be grown in a closed environment, where there is less interaction with the atmosphere and air itself. Plants can absorb heavy metals such as nickel (Ni) and other pollutants from the air. For this reason, it is suggested to install air purifiers to purify the incoming air.
– On hydroponic farms, the source of water is usually rivers, ponds, lakes or groundwater. It is necessary to test the water before using it for hydroponic agriculture. If traces of nickel (Ni) or other heavy metals are found in the water, the water should be treated before use taking care to maintain a neutral pH, more suitable for hydroponic agriculture.
– Depending on the hydroponic technique used, the substrate plays a key role in ensuring anchorage to the roots of a plant produced by hydroponic agriculture. There is a greater chance that a plant can absorb Nickel (Ni) in abundance if it is rooted in normal soil exposed to normal weather conditions. But this risk is significantly reduced by the different rooting media available on the market (which must not be contaminated with nickel in any way during the production process).
So there are many variations in the game!
Thanks to the Nickel tester:
– the farmer can easily increase the number of on-site tests without the use of low-cost, specialized personnel. By ensuring greater control over the product, it will be able to provide a more valuable product to the market.
– The consumer (particularly with nickel allergies) can check the amount of nickel or heavy metals in fluids during the day, being able to choose between what he can or cannot eat.
How does the nickel tester work?
Simply insert the stick into the reader and read the amount of metal you want to analyse. The study behind it is based on sensors developed following scientific research Cinti, S., & Arduini, F. (2017). Graphen e-based screen-printed electrochemical (bio) sensors and their applications: Efforts and criticisms. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 89, 107-122.
Source Picture: Cinti, S., & Arduini, F. (2017). Graphen e-based screen-printed electrochemical (bio) sensors and their applications: Efforts and criticisms. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 89, 107-122.
– Allergie alimentari e ambientali – A. Calatin Giunti
We will be ready soon! but in the meanwhile…