To improve the underlying data for emission inventories, particulate matter (PM10) emissions were determined for the most common loose-housing system in Switzerland. Emission measurements were conducted in two out of three seasons (summer, transition period, winter) per farm in six naturally ventilated dairy loose-housing systems comprising cubicles, solid floors and an outdoor exercise area. PM10 was collected cumulatively over 72 hours with impactors (particle separators) at a total of 9 to 14 measuring points in the housing and outdoor exercise area, as well as in the background. A tracer ratio method with two tracer gases (SF6 and SF5CF3) was used to determine the emissions. PM10 concentrations in the animal area were usually just above or within the range of the background concentration. Across all farms, PM10 emissions varied between 0,02 and 2,1 g per livestock unit and day. At 0,64 g per cow and day, the derived PM10 emission factor is considerably lower than those used to date in the inventories.
Agroscope has developed a scoring system for plant protection in vegetable crops. The system enables the creation of incentives for reducing the use and environmental risks of plant-protection products and promoting preventive and non-chemical measures.
Many consumer goods contain activated carbon, which can be contaminated with pollutants like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Agroscope showed that current analytical methods and legal bases used to address PAH content are incomplete.
Dry summers can see a loss of up to 25% of total Swiss roughage production. This is because grassland yields are strongly correlated with summer drought, as shown by a new analysis conducted by Agroscope and the Swiss Farmers’ Union.