My name is Ariel Romeo, Product Operations Lead at Biome Makers, a startup specialized in analyzing the soil microbiome to assess soil health. Together with my colleague Francisco Lopez, one of our agronomists, we would like to introduce our company to the GOAT community. Our goal is to provide growers worldwide with tools to understand the microbial dimension of their soils, something that a few years ago was either impossible, or reserved for the few researchers and large ag corporations that could afford these technologies.
By combining microbial DNA Sequencing and AI, we are able to monitor living soil status, and provide a comprehensive view of soil functions. Our soil functional analyses, with the name of BeCrop, are delivered in an easy to understand report, divided into three main areas:
Soil biosustainability. This part of the report focuses on the diversity of the microbial species, both taxonomically and functionally, and their resistance to external aggressions. Since microbial communities are affected not only by environmental pressures but also by management practices, this gives an idea of how sustainable the soil management practices are.
Soil health. This provides information about the plant disease risk, based on the presence and proportion of the pathogens, as well as the presence of other microbial species that compete with them. We are constantly updating our databases, allowing us to detect pathogens before they possess a threat. This gives growers the advantage of knowing what’s present in the soil when planning their IPM, allowing to cut on unnecessary applications. The report also provides information on the abundance of biocontrol species, microbial phytohormone production and adaptation to stress conditions.
Nutrient cycling. This part of the report is unique, and presents information about the potential of the microbial pathways making nutrients available for plant uptake. These pathways have been known for decades, but now for the first time, we can calculate the potential of microbes to cycle nutrients and make them bioavailable within these pathways.
Besides our soil functional analyses, we also provide Soil Bioactivity tests for bioactive/inoculative products, and Gheom, a technology based on the BeCrop reports which through a scientific comparative approach assesses the effect and efficacy of AgInputs or farming practices in different locations, over several time points and using control parcels.
Our process involves 16S and ITS sequencing to define the prokaryote and fungi respectively, followed by the use of our proprietary bioinformatic pipeline. We are happy to provide their raw microbe abundance data to those growers interested in knowing all microbial species present in their soils. On top of that, we offer access to our portal where users can explore and contrast the populations in their samples, as well as compare report results side by side.
Among all those scientific characteristics of BeCrop we want to mention its technological ones, which open a big range of possibilities to get connected/integrated with any platform and the benefits are increased with our BeCrop mobile app.
We would love to answer any questions and hear your feedback.