Winner of the OFIA Science Prize

The OFIA Science Prize (5000 US$) was awarded to Dr. Hiroshi Uchino from the Tohoku Agricultural Research Center, for his work on the use of cover crops for weed suppression. The Science Prize is the prize for scientists who discover promising applications for organic farming, processing, and marketing.

Weed damage is one of the most severe causes of significant crop yield loss in organic farming. The use of cover crops is one method used to prevent weed damage, but sometimes cover crops damage crop growth as well as weed growth.

Dr. Uchino developed a simple method to measure the ‘Vegetation Cover Ratio’ (the percentage of area covered by vegetation to unit soil surface area) of each crop species to evaluate the relationship between growth traits of cover crops and weed suppression.

His findings will help organic farmers to better use cover crops for weed suppression based on scientific knowledge not only in Japan but also in other countries.

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