• Spent Mushroom Compost - Options for use

      Maher, M.J.; Lenehan, J.J.; Staunton, W.P. (Teagasc, 1993-11)
    • Comparison of phenolic and flavonoid content and antioxidant activity in vitro among potato varieties.

      Valcarel, Jesus; Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Micheal T.; Brunton, Nigel; O'Brien, N.; Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Programme (Teagasc, 2011)
      Diets rich in fruits and vegetables have been associated with a lower incidence of cancer and heart disease, which may be related to the antioxidant activity of bioactive compounds present in these foods. Phenolic compounds are potent antioxidants in vitro, of which flavonoids are of particular interest for their potential positive impact on health. Potatoes are one of the most consumed vegetables in the world and therefore an important source of phenolics. In Ireland they are the third most important crop with a farm gate value of approximately 45 million euros annually. The aim of this work was to evaluate the antioxidant activity of methanolic solutions extracted from the skin and flesh of potato tubers against the stable radical DPPH and analyze its relationship to the content of total phenolics and total flavonoids.
    • Effect of organic and conventional cultivation techniques on yield, phenolic content, and sensory parameters in two carrot varieties

      Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Micheal T.; Brunton, Nigel; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; 06/NITARFC6 (Teagasc, 2011)
      Carrots are one of the most important field grown vegetables in Ireland with a farm gate value of 16 million euros in 2007. They contain health promoting bioactive compounds including carotenoids, phenolics and polyacetylenes. Organically grown vegetables are often perceived as healthier and to have better flavour. The objective of this study was to determine levels of phenolics and flavonoids in organic and conventionally grown carrots, and to determine if they can be distinguished by taste.
    • Protected crop growing : a guide for home and market gardeners

      Gaffney, Michael; Finn, Leo (Teagasc, 2011-07)
      There is no better feeling than eating something you have grown yourself. This is especially true for crops like tomatoes which require constant care to get them from seed to plate. There can be a great feeling of accomplishment. This guide is designed to give people the confidence to have a go at growing themselves.
    • Screening of Irish Fruit and Vegetable Germplasm for Novel Anti-tumour and Pesticidal Compounds

      Alqudah, J.M. I.; Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Micheal T.; Martin-Diana, A. B.; Barry-Ryan, C.; Dublin Institute of Technology (Teagasc, 2012)
      Phytochemicals are a rich source of novel therapeutic and insecticidal agents (McLaughlin and Chang, 1999). Considerable research effort has been directed at screening exotic and medicinal plants in the search for novel products. However, plants which have traditional food uses have been little explored. In addition the range, type and level of individual bioactive compounds can vary significantly between different species, different cultivars of the same species and different tissue types of the plant (Reilly, in press) Therefore, the objective of this study was to screen a range of fruits and vegetables which can be grown in Ireland for novel bioactive compounds for use in food production and as bio-pesticides.
    • A Guide to Vegetable Growing

      Alexander, Stephen (Teagasc, Oak Park, Carlow, Ireland, 2012-04)
      This book provides easy to follow guidelines for growing your own vegetables.
    • Feasibility Study on the Use of Visible–Near-Infrared Spectroscopy for the Screening of Individual and Total Glucosinolate Contents in Broccoli

      Hernandez-Hierro, Jose Miguel; Valverde, Juan; Villacreces, Salvador; Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Michael; Gonzalez-Miret, Maria Lourdes; Heredia, Francisco Jose; Downey, Gerard; Spanish MICINN; Junta de Andalucia; JCI-2011-09201; AGL2011-30254-C02; AGR 6331 (American Chemical Society, 2012-07-11)
      The potential of visible–near-infrared spectroscopy to determine selected individual and total glucosinolates in broccoli has been evaluated. Modified partial least-squares regression was used to develop quantitative models to predict glucosinolate contents. Both the whole spectrum and different spectral regions were separately evaluated to develop the quantitative models; in all cases the best results were obtained using the near-infrared zone between 2000 and 2498 nm. These models have been externally validated for the screening of glucoraphanin, glucobrassicin, 4-methoxyglucobrassicin, neoglucobrassicin, and total glucosinolates contents. In addition, discriminant partial least-squares was used to distinguish between two possible broccoli cultivars and showed a high degree of accuracy. In the case of the qualitative analysis, best results were obtained using the whole spectrum (i.e., 400–2498 nm) with a correct classification rate of 100% in external validation being obtained.
    • On farm and fresh produce management

      Reilly, Kim (John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2013-01-02)
      This chapter contains sections titled: Introduction, Pre-harvest factors affecting phytochemical content, Harvest and post-harvest management practices, Future prospects, and References.
    • Effect of organic, conventional and mixed cultivation practices on soil microbial community structure and nematode abundance in a cultivated onion crop

      Reilly, Kim; Cullen, Eileen; Lola-Luz, Theodora; Stone, Dorothy; Valverde, Juan; Gaffney, Michael; Brunton, Nigel; Grant, Jim; Griffiths, Bryan S; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; 06/NITARFC6 (Wiley, 2013-06-07)
      BACKGROUND: Responses of the soil microbial and nematode community to organic and conventional agricultural practices were studied using the Teagasc Kinsealy Systems Comparison trial as the experimental system. The trial is a long term field experiment which divides conventional and organic agriculture into component pest-control and soil treatment practices. We hypothesised that management practices would affect soil ecology and used community level physiological profiles (CLPP), microbial and nematode counts, and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) to characterise soil microbial communities in plots used for onion (Allium cepa L.) cultivation. RESULTS: Microbial activity and culturable bacterial counts were significantly higher under fully organic management. Culturable fungi, actinomycete and nematode counts showed a consistent trend towards higher numbers under fully organic management but these data were not statistically significant. No differences were found in the fungal/bacterial ratio. DGGE banding patterns and sequencing of excised bands showed clear differences between treatments. Putative onion fungal pathogens were predominantly sequenced under conventional soil treatment practices whilst putative soil suppressive bacterial species were predominantly sequenced from the organic pest-control treatment plots. CONCLUSION: Organic management increased microbial activity and diversity. Sequence data was indicative of differences in functional groups and warrants further investigation.
    • Potential of cultivar and crop management to affect phytochemical content in winter-grown sprouting broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. var. italica)

      Reilly, Kim; Valverde, Juan; Finn, Leo; Rai, Dilip K; Brunton, Nigel; Sorenson, Jens C; Sorenson, Hilmer; Gaffney, Michael; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; 06/NITAFRC6 (Wiley, 2013-07-08)
      BACKGROUND: Variety and crop management strategies affect the content of bioactive compounds (phenolics, flavonoids and glucosinolates) in green broccoli (calabrese) types, which are cultivated during summer and autumn in temperate European climates. Sprouting broccoli types are morphologically distinct and are grown over the winter season and harvested until early spring. Thus they show considerable potential for development as an import substitution crop for growers and consumers during the ‘hungry gap’ of early spring. The present study investigated the effect of variety and management practices on phytochemical content in a range of sprouting broccoli varieties. RESULTS: Yields were significantly higher in white sprouting broccoli varieties. Levels of phenolics and flavonoids were in the range 81.6-270.4 and 16.9–104.8 mg 100g -1 FW respectively depending on year and cultivar, and were highest in varieties TZ 5052, TZ 5055, Red Admiral and Improved White Sprouting. In-row spacing did not affect flavonoid content. Phenolic and flavonoid content generally increased with increasing floret maturity and levels were high in edible portions of the crop. Crop wastes (leaf and flower) contained 145.9-239.3 and 21.5–116.6 mg 100g -1 FW total phenolics and flavonoids respectively depending on cultivar, tissue and year. Climatic factors had a significant effect on phenolic and flavonoid content. Levels of total and some individual glucosinolates were higher in sprouting broccoli than in the green broccoli variety Ironman. CONCLUSION: Levels of total phenolics, flavonoids and glucosinolates are higher in sprouting than green broccoli types. Sprouting broccoli represents an excellent source of dietary bioactive compounds.
    • Preliminary study on the use of near infrared hyperspectral imaging for quantitation and localisation of total glucosinolates in freeze-dried broccoli

      Hernandez-Hierro, Jose Miguel; Esquerre, Carlos; Valverde, Juan; Villacreces, Salvador; Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Michael; Gonzalez-Miret, M. Lourdes; Heredia, Francisco J.; O'Donnell, Colm P.; Downey, Gerard; Spanish MICINN; Junta de Andalucia; JCI-2011-09201); AGL2011-30254-C02; AGR 6331. (Elsevier, 2013-11-15)
      The use of hyperspectral imaging to (a) quantify and (b) localise total glucosinolates in florets of a single broccoli species has been examined. Two different spectral regions (vis–NIR and NIR), a number of spectral pre-treatments and different mask development strategies were studied to develop the quantitative models. These models were then applied to freeze-dried slices of broccoli to identify regions within individual florets which were rich in glucosinolates. The procedure demonstrates potential for the quantitative screening and localisation of total glucosinolates in broccoli using the 950–1650 nm wavelength range. These compounds were mainly located in the external part of florets.
    • Hydrogen Sulfide Gas Emissions in the Human-Occupied Zone during Disturbance and Removal of Stored Spent Mushroom Compost

      Velusami, Balasubramanian; Curran, Thomas P; Grogan, Helen M (American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, 2013-12)
      Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas levels were monitored in the human-occupied zone at four spent mushroom compost (SMC) storage sites during removal of SMC for application on agricultural land. During SMC removal operations, H2S gas monitors were mounted on the outside of the tractor, positioned at the SMC periphery, and worn by individual tractor drivers. The highest H2S concentrations (10 s average) detected outside the tractor, at the SMC periphery, and for the tractor driver were, respectively, 454, 249, and 100 ppm for the outdoor sites and 214, 75, and 51 ppm for the indoor sites. The highest short-term exposure values (STEV, over a 15 min period) outside the tractor, at the SMC periphery, and for the tractor driver were 147, 55, and 86 ppm for the outdoor sites and 19, 9, and 10 ppm for the indoor sites. The values exceeded the current maximum permissible concentration limit of 10 ppm for all the sites except for the SMC periphery and tractor driver at the indoor sites. Results suggest that H2S levels detected at indoor storage sites during SMC removal are lower compared to outdoor storage sites. Results indicate that there is a substantial health and safety risk associated with working in the vicinity of stored SMC when it is being disturbed and removed for land application, and that the risk is great for the tractor driver. This article discusses possible control measures and lists recommendations to reduce the risks.
    • Hydrogen Sulfide Gas Emissions during Disturbance and Removal of Stored Spent Mushroom Compost

      Velusami, Balasubramanian; Curran, Thomas P; Grogan, Helen M; Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Programme; UCD School of Biosystems Engineering; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, 2013-12)
      Spent mushroom compost (SMC) is a by-product of the mushroom industry that is used as an agricultural fertilizer. In Europe, SMC storage and use are governed by EU Nitrates Directive 91/676/EEC to protect waterways against pollution by nitrates. A health and safety risk was identified during the removal of stored SMC for land application, as the stored SMC released high levels of toxic H2S gas into the atmosphere when disturbed. In this study, emissions of H2S were monitored at two outdoor and two indoor locations where stored SMC was being removed for land application. A repeating peaktrough pattern of H2S emissions was detected at all sites, with peaks corresponding to periods of active disturbance of SMC. The highest H2S concentrations (10 s average) detected at the SMC face were, respectively, 680 and 2083 ppm at outdoor sites 1 and 2, and 687 and 89 ppm at indoor sites 3 and 4. Higher concentrations of H2S were released from older SMC compared to newer material. Indoor-stored SMC had lower moisture content (53% to 65%) compared to outdoor-stored material (66% to 72%), while the temperature of indoor-stored SMC was higher (33°C to 51°C) compared to outdoorstored material (24°C to 36°C). The current short-term exposure limit (STEL) of 10 ppm was exceeded at all sites except site 4, which was smaller than the other sites, indicating a significant health and safety risk associated with working in the vicinity of stored SMC when it is being actively disturbed. Results suggest that SMC stored under cover in small heaps (600 m3) emits less H2S during disturbance and removal compared to SMC stored outdoors in large heaps (>1500 m3). This should be taken into consideration in the design, construction, and management of SMC storage facilities. Health and safety protocols should be in place at SMC storage facilities to cover the risks of exposure to toxic H2S gas during disturbance of stored SMC.
    • Effect of Genotype and Environment on the Glycoalkaloid Content of Rare, Heritage, and Commercial Potato Varieties

      Valcarel, Jesus; Reilly, Kim; Gaffney, Michael; O'Brien, Nora; Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Programme (Wiley, 2014-04-02)
      Potatoes accumulate toxic steroidal compounds that could be harmful for humans if consumed in high quantities and must be controlled. In this study, we were interested in assessing the levels and variation of glycoalkaloid content in 60 varieties of potato planted in 2 trial sites over 2 y. Total glycoalkaloid levels ranged from 4 to 957 mg/kg of dry weight in the flesh and from 150 to 8133 mg/kg in the skin, with the latter accumulating generally more α-chaconine than α-solanine. Contents in the flesh were below the safe limit for all varieties, but were generally above in the skin. Maximum values in each site and year of cultivation were found for varieties “Beauty of Hebron,” “May Queen,” and “Arran Pilot” in the skin and “Beauty of Hebron,” “International Kidney,” and “Congo” in the flesh. Year of cultivation had a significant effect on total glycoalkaloid content (P < 0.0001), with interactions between variety and site of cultivation and variety and year of cultivation also significant (P < 0.0001), implying that environmental effects seem to act differentially and could induce high levels in genetically predisposed varieties.
    • Variation in bioactive content in broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. italica) grown under conventional and organic production systems

      Valverde, Juan; Reilly, Kim; Villacreces, Salvador; Gaffney, Michael; Grant, Jim; Brunton, Nigel; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; 06/NITAFRC6 (Wiley on behalf of Society of Chemical Industry, 2014-07-30)
      BACKGROUND Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables contain a number of bioactive compounds, in particular glucosinolates and polyphenols, which are proposed to confer health benefits to the consumer. Demand for organic crops is at least partly based on a perception that organic crops may contain higher levels of bioactive compounds; however, insufficient research has been carried out to either support or refute such claims. RESULTS In this study we examined the effect of conventional, organic, and mixed cultivation practices on the content of total phenolics, total flavonoids, and total and individual glucosinolates in two varieties of broccoli grown over 2 years in a split-plot factorial systems comparison trial. Levels of total phenolics and total flavonoids showed a significant year-on-year variation but were not significantly different between organic and conventional production systems. In contrast, levels of the indolyl glucosinolates glucobrassicin and neoglucobrassicin were significantly higher (P < 0.05) under fully organic compared to fully conventional management. CONCLUSION Organic cultivation practices resulted in significantly higher levels of glucobrassicin and neoglucobrassicin in broccoli florets; however, other investigated compounds were unaffected by production practices.
    • Multiple viral infections in Agaricus bisporus - Characterisation of 18 unique RNA viruses and 8 ORFans identified by deep sequencing

      Deakin, Gregory; Dobbs, Edward; Bennett, Julie M.; Jones, Ian M.; Grogan, Helen M.; Burton, Kerry S.; Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Programme; European Commission; 201043; 286836 (Nature Publishing Group, 2017-05-26)
      Thirty unique non-host RNAs were sequenced in the cultivated fungus, Agaricus bisporus, comprising 18 viruses each encoding an RdRp domain with an additional 8 ORFans (non-host RNAs with no similarity to known sequences). Two viruses were multipartite with component RNAs showing correlative abundances and common 3′ motifs. The viruses, all positive sense single-stranded, were classified into diverse orders/families. Multiple infections of Agaricus may represent a diverse, dynamic and interactive viral ecosystem with sequence variability ranging over 2 orders of magnitude and evidence of recombination, horizontal gene transfer and variable fragment numbers. Large numbers of viral RNAs were detected in multiple Agaricus samples; up to 24 in samples symptomatic for disease and 8–17 in asymptomatic samples, suggesting adaptive strategies for co-existence. The viral composition of growing cultures was dynamic, with evidence of gains and losses depending on the environment and included new hypothetical viruses when compared with the current transcriptome and EST databases. As the non-cellular transmission of mycoviruses is rare, the founding infections may be ancient, preserved in wild Agaricus populations, which act as reservoirs for subsequent cell-to-cell infection when host populations are expanded massively through fungiculture.