AGRINOVA –Key Findings Phase 1
In May 2019, Vertical announced encouraging results from Phase 1 of its R&D agreement with AGRINOVA on wollastonite from the St-Onge deposit:
- Verticals’ wollastonite could be BNQ-certified or registered under the Fertilizers Act in Quebec.
- The safety profile of Vertical’s wollastonite was successfully demonstrated by a germination and elongation test with barley.
- Vertical’s wollastonite has a neutralizing power and efficiency which compares it favorably with current lime products in the market, and that it has appreciable levels of major and minor elements (silicon, calcium, magnesium and manganese) that are essential for plant nutrition and growth.
- Another benefit of Vertical’s wollastonite that was identified by AGRINOVA is its high bio-availability of silicon that leads to both enhanced plant growth and resistance to abiotic and biotic stress in a range of agricultural crops, as studies have shown there is a significant need for this element that is not being filled by commercial fertilizers.
- Results for the second market study component indicate that wollastonite has a significant potential to be used for maple production (maple syrup production), organic agriculture, sod production, large-scale crops (cereals, corn and soybeans) and boreal forestry (spruce budworm control and post-fire regeneration). Based on these uses, the potential agricultural demand for wollastonite in the initial target market of Quebec could be in the order of 274,000 tonnes for the province of Quebec as a whole, plus additional demand of approximately 59,000 tonnes from the Maritime Provinces of Canada, based on the increased potential for wollastonite to be used for regional blueberry and potato crops.