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Management of Plant Nutrients to Maintain or Enhance Florida Agriculture and Environment

The UF/IFAS Extension Soil Testing Program includes soil, tissue, water and waste diagnostic testing and carries out the public service mandate of the Land Grant University system by offering educational programs through the Extension Soil Testing Laboratory (ESTL) and the Livestock Waste Testing Laboratory (LWTL) under the IFAS Analytical Services Laboratories (IFAS ANSERV Labs). Diagnostic interpretation of soil, tissue, water and waste test results is an essential tool in creating awareness about appropriate nutrient applications for economically and environmentally sustainable agricultural production. By providing nutrient recommendations, these programs continuously share and improve information on the soil fertility levels and nutrient requirements for various commodities grown in the state, both with the growers and appropriate agencies.

Educational information is disseminated to all citizens through offering soil, tissue, water and waste testing services at the ANSERV Labs. Also state and local agencies responsible for water quality regulations turn to the local state-run soil testing laboratory to guide public policies regarding the nutrient applications and crop requirements. Support for research programs that help provide technical support to the state agencies for developing BMPs and other nutrient management strategies is provided through the IFAS-wide Analytical Research and Environmental Quality Laboratories, also operating as components of the ANSERV Labs.