Soil Foodweb NZ
Soil Foodweb NZ (registered name Soil Foodweb Institute NZ,) was opened in Cambridge in 2003. The laboratory now operates out of Waihi on the border of Waikato and Bay of Plenty.
Understanding how the microbes effect soil health requires a detailed knowledge on what organisms exist in the soil, how many of them are active, how efficient the nutrient cycling capability is and if the balances are correct for the crop grown.
At SFI NZ, the team assesses soil, compost, compost tea, leaf colonisation, vermicast and various other biological products for fungi, bacteria, protozoa, and mycorrhizal fungi. Armed with this information you are then able to confidently decide on the right management tools plus weigh up how effective they are over ensuing years. Working with many input suppliers and consultants we are able to adapt the farmers existing nutrient program to facilitate a smooth transition from ‘mineral-only’ replacement to biological production.
By maintaining an annual monitoring program, the transformation is able to progress at the same rate as the farmers understanding and confidence.
Cherryle Prew, Owner and Manager of Soil Foodweb New Zealand, has been working in the industry since 1991 when she bought and began operating a Certified Organic Kiwifruit Orchard in Te Puke. Prior to opening the New Zealand Lab she has worked as consultant for an organic packhouse and spent 3 years as an Organic Systems Auditor for SGG and Bio-Gro NZ.
After meeting Dr Elaine Ingham and attending a significant number of her lectures Cherryle was invited by Soil Foodweb Inc, (Corvallis, Oregon, USA) to open a franchise here in NZ. Her training was completed in the Lismore and Corvallis Soil Foodweb Laboratories.
Since its inception, Soil Foodweb Institute NZ (SFI NZ) has been working with thousands of agriculture and horticultural growers throughout both islands of New Zealand to help them improve the health and productivity of their soils.