NIAB - National Institute of Agricultural Botany

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Laboratory Services

Lab Services

NIAB LabTest is one of our longest established services and its expertise and state of the art equipment provide impartial science-based advice and cost-effective help with a range of problems faced by many sectors of the agricultural and horticultural industries. For prices and details on all our tests go to the NIAB LabTest homepage.

NIAB has extensive service based laboratories providing efficient, scientifically based testing methods at a competitive price.

NIAB has a unique capability of scale, scope and staff experience in biochemical testing for produce quality in a diverse range of crops including cereals, herbage, oilseeds, vegetables and potatoes. Specialist biochemistry testing includes analysis of seed treatment loading, micro-malting.

Variety identification - routine and non-routine genotyping services are also available.

Seed quality testing involves both the function of the Official Seed Testing Station (OSTS) for England and Wales, and commercial services to growers and their advisors. Accredited by the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA), the OSTS provides critical support to the statutory systems for Defra and the UK Seeds Industry. Using standardised and precise techniques and extensive specialized knowledge, the OSTS and related services combine expertise on seed sampling, seed biology, and seed purity. This capability can be linked to field-based services checking emergence and vigour in different soil types, and investigations on seed ageing.

Seed pathology focuses on seed health testing, potato tuber health, soil testing for various pathogenic agents, and a wider "Plant Disease Clinic" service diagnosing problems in the growing crop. Backed by NIAB research pathologists, the diagnostic unit can cover major and minor crop species and ornamental species, and provide interpretation and advice on results.