The facility features equipment such as a sieving tower, balances and a drying cabinet, and aims to provide a new service for the European region: GLP soil characterization.
What is soil characterization?
Filled with minerals, organic matter, organisms, liquids and gases, fertile soil is an essential natural resource, especially in agriculture. That's why soil characterization is conducted to determine the chemical, physical and biological properties that affect soil fertility.
Sieve TowersSieve tower for soil texture analyses. Regulation of time and shake amplitude during sieving (wet and dry) of soil through different sieve sizes.
Soil characterization is also needed for regulatory purposes such as in environmental fate and behavior testing of plant protection products (PPPs). However, agricultural soils vary greatly in terms of texture, fertility and nutrient content. That's why the collection of soil samples from different sites is needed to adequately test for that variability. This allows for soil variability characterization which is the basis for assessing the environmental behavior of chemical active ingredients and metabolites in agricultural soil.
Supporting Environmental Fate Studies
SGS provides various kinds of environmental fate studies where soil characterization is needed, including:
Soil adsorption and desorption studies
Aerobic and anaerobic transformation studies
Water and sediment studies
Field soil dissipation and accumulation studies
Field leaching, run-off and drainage studies
Rotational crop studies
SGS's pan-European field trial network allows us to arrange soil sampling at different field sites and directly receive collected samples at our GLP-certified soil laboratory at Taunusstein, Germany. The facility at Taunusstein is SGS's flagship laboratory in Europe for GLP residue testing and provides experts specializing in GLP study directorship for environmental fate and residue studies across Europe. With a team dedicated to sample management and processing, the Taunusstein laboratory handles several thousand GLP samples every year. Our expert team prepares the samples for analyses and conducts the necessary soil property tests using a wide range of equipment and methods.
All soil testing at the Germany facility follows GLP standards, maintained through an in-house Quality Assurance Unit (QAU). This allows us to provide customers with a GLP study report including a detailed description of the applicable methods and results.
In the event that direct delivery is not possible, our experienced logistics team can help organize the shipment to make sure it arrives safely.
A Wide Range of Soil Tests
SGS provides a wide variety of soil property tests including:
Soil texture and particle size distribution according to DIN and USDA classification
Water retention at pF 1.0-3.0 from undisturbed soil samples
Permanent wilting point at pF 4.2
Dry bulk density (from undisturbed soil samples)
pH (in H2O and CaCl2)
Cation exchange capacity
Microbial biomass (fumigation extraction method)
Total organic carbon (TOC) and organic matter (OM)
Total inorganic carbon (TIC)
As a global service provider, SGS strives to maintain best practices and provide results that meet regulatory requirements. Our global network of laboratories and field trial centers can assist businesses with a wide range of services, including microbial, ecotoxicology, eFate and product chemistry as well as residue testing. Our experienced team of field program managers, study directors and analytical scientists and our in-house QAU provide GLP-compliant services from study plan to delivery of the final report.