UK Biochar Research Centre
Charchive Standard Biochars

Field trials

Thematic Strategy:
Systems & Social
Key Staff:
Jason Cook, Jim Hammond


Field trials differ from field experiments in that there is typically less control of all the variables. Field trials usually occur on a commercial farm with the close cooperation of the farmer. They are faced with the constraints and real-world practices of farming including: machinery and equipment, crop rotations, management practices and routines, labour and capital constraints and so on. Biochar has to be deployed in the existing agricultural system if it is to be effective: hence, we need to understand better what the critical constraints, barriers and opportunities to deployment might be from those who will ultimately be undertaking deployment, i.e. the farmer and farm workers. The results of field trials can be difficult to interpret due to the fact that it is very hard, often impossible, to control all the independent variables.  As knowledge and experience accumulate, it should be possible to use the results from field experiments and laboratory studies to inform the conduct of field trials. Meanwhile, the results from field trials can be an important source of ideas and hypothesis-generation for field experiments and laboratory work.

Relevant Projects: