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Kilcar, Ireland

Lola-Luz T.,Agrifood Scientific | Hennequart F.,Oilean Glas Teo | Gaffney M.,Teagasc
Scientia Horticulturae

Regular consumption of fruits and vegetables is linked with a lowered risk of heart disease, cancer and stroke. Two different pilot studies were set up in Greece (potato), and Ireland (onion) to study the effect of a commercial cold process seaweed extract from Ascophyllum nodosum on the yield and phytochemical content of potato and onion. Results from this study indicated that there was an increase in phenolic and flavonoid content in onion while in potato significant differences were detected only in flavonoid content. There were no statistically significant differences in yield in either crop, although seaweed treated potato plants had higher yields. These results indicate the potential of seaweed extracts in increasing the phytochemical content of vegetables. © 2014. Source

Field experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of an unfortified extract, of Ascophyllum nodosum on yield and nutritional quality of two broccoli cultivars ('Ironman' and 'Red Admiral'). Total phenolic, total flavonoid, and total isothiocyanates content were higher in all seaweed treatments compared to the untreated control. In 'Ironman' there was a 2.2 fold increase in total phenolic, 1.5 fold in total flavonoid and 2.6 fold in total isothiocyanates content, in the higher application rate compared to the control. Similarly in 'Red Admiral', there was a 2.3 fold increase in total phenolic, 2.6 fold in total flavonoid and, 2.2 fold in total isothiocyanates content. There was a consistent effect on the increase of total phenolic, total flavonoid and total isothiocyanates content, while there was no yield increase recorded at the lower seaweed application rate. Results suggest that application of seaweed extracts can significantly increase the amount of phytochemicals and improve the nutritional quality of broccoli. Source

Brassica crops are rich is phytochemical compounds and frequent consumption of these vegetables has been associated with a lower risk in cancer, heart disease, hypertension and stroke. The effect of three commercial extracts of the brown seaweed, Ascophyllum nodosum, on phytochemical content and yield in cabbage plants was tested under field conditions in two consecutive crops. Total phenolic content was higher in all seaweed treated plants, with the highest increase recorded with AlgaeGreen™ (3.5 l ha-1) with a 2 fold increase relative to the control. The other commercial seaweed extract, XT achieved a lower increases of 1.3 fold (3.5 l ha-1). Similar increases were recorded in total flavonoid content. No statistically significant increases in yield were recorded with any of the seaweed extracts tested. The results suggest that seaweed extracts stimulated an increased accumulation of phytochemicals in cabbage but had no significant effect in yield under these experimental conditions. Source

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