Levels of Sulfur as an Essential Nutrient Element in the Soil-Crop-Food System in Austria
Total sulfur data of various agricultural and food items from the lab of the author, have been compiled to develop an understanding of sulfur levels and ecological cycling in Austria. As sulfur level is not an included factor among the quality criteria of soil and fertilizer composition, the database is rather small. Problems in analytical determinations of total sulfur, in particular digestions, are outlined. As a protein component, sulfur is enriched in matrices of animal origin, in particular in egg white. There is substantial excretion from animals and man via urine. Organic fertilizers (manures, composts) might contribute significantly to the sulfur budget of soils, which is important for organic farming of crops with high sulfur needs. For soils, drainage is a main route of loss of soluble sulfate, thus pot experiments may yield unrealistic sulfur budgets.
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