Publication Details

Arioli, T., Mattner, S. W. & Winberg, P. C. (2015). Applications of seaweed extracts in Australian agriculture: past, present and future. Journal of Applied Phycology, 27 (5), 2007-2015.


A rapidly growing world population has highlighted the need to significantly increase food production in the context of a world with accelerating soil and water shortages as well as climatic stressors. This situation has generated new interest in the application of liquid seaweed extracts because of their potent plant growth-enhancing properties through metabolic benefits, triggering disease response pathways and increasing stress tolerance. The basis for these benefits is complex and poorly understood. Liquid seaweed extracts are complex and have been demonstrated to possess novel mechanisms for increasing crop productivity. The benefits of seaweed extracts to crops have previously been reviewed in the context of the northern hemisphere, but not in the context of Australia, its crops and unique stressors. This review considers the application of seaweed extracts in Australian agriculture by (i) introducing the history of the Australian liquid seaweed extract industry and (ii) focusing on evidence of Australian research related to seaweed extract composition, plant growth properties during plant establishment, pathogenic disease and new approaches to phenotyping the biological efficacy of seaweed extracts. This type of research is essential for future Australian agriculture to develop effective strategies for the use of liquid seaweed extracts.



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