RDP – BettER-Bio Project


BettER-Bio is a project funded by the Region of Emilia-Romagna as part of the 2014-2020 Rural Development Programme, measure 16.1.01 “European partnership operational groups for productivity and sustainability in agriculture”, Focus Area 3A. The Plan lasts two years (March 2021-March 2023); the Operational Group is made up of the Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (coordinator and scientific manager), Azienda Agraria Sperimentale Stuard, Open Fields, Molino Grassi, the “Vittorio Tadini” Training, Experimentation and Innovation Centre, SO.PR.E.D. Società Cooperativa Agricola, Azienda Agricola Giovanelli Simone and Azienda Agricola Guglielmi Giuliano e Zanelli Anna S.S.

BettER-Bio aims to promote the multiple benefits of using biostimulants in agriculture with the ultimate goal of implementing a “green” and sustainable approach for the production of organic wheat.  The specific objectives of the Plan are: i) to use nutrients more efficiently in organic wheat; ii) to mitigate the presence of phosphites and ethylphosphonate in organic products and in wheat in particular; iii) to promote the capacity of adaptation of agricultural crop systems to climate change; iv) to improve the innovative and nutritional quality of organic wheat.

The project activities will regard organic durum and common wheat, using a strategy that integrates biostimulants of microbial (mycorrhiza, trichoderma and rhizospheric bacteria) and other complementary origins (hydrolysed proteins). Plot tests will be performed over two seasons, together with a larger “on farm” test. The use of biostimulants will be integrated with decision support systems (DSS) to optimise activities and reduce chemical input. More specifically, the following activities will be performed:

  • Action 1: Field plot tests to determine biostimulant action;
  • Action 2: Field plot tests to mitigate the presence of phosphites and ethylphosphonate;
  • Action 3: On-farm tests to determine biostimulant action in association with DSS;
  • Action 4: Water stress resistance tests.

The results will be shared with farmers, technicians and stakeholders connected with the supply chains under study. Training and consultancy will also be provided to farms in Emilia-Romagna with the aim of sharing information on agricultural methods based on the use of biostimulants and induced plant defences, as well as the advantage of implementing DSS.

TECHNICAL-SCIENTIFIC COORDINATOR / MANAGER: Prof. Luigi Lucini, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

DURATION: 03/2021 – 03/2023

CONTRIBUTION: 221.123,12 euro

Website Commissione Europea – FEASR: