I am a Dutch researcher and lecturer on the agronomy of temperate (potato) and tropical perennial crops and cropping systems. I work for two Wageningen chair groups (Centre for Crop Systems Analysis and Plant Production Systems) in partnership with McCain Foods.
My current work focuses on setting up an Advanced Agronomy MSc course for the Plant Sciences programme. The new course fills an important gap in the programme and aims to train a new cadre of highly skilled young agronomists.
In addition I supervise PhD and MSc students on topics related to potato agronomy and to cocoa and oil palm cultivation.
My research is multi-disciplinary, focusing on the ecophysiological, agronomic and socio-economic aspects of plant production. I like to collaborate with NGO and industry partners to deliver impact.
From 2018 to 2020 I worked on the CocoaSoils project. The research focused on setting up large-scale fertiliser trials to unravel key questions about cocoa nutrition, ISFM, and possibilities for improving yields.
For my PhD thesis I worked with a number of oil palm farmers in Sumatra and Kalimantan to measure the impact of improved fertilisation on yield, and to determine the time-lag between investment (in more/better fertilisers) and returns (increased yield). We know that oil palm needs at least two years to really respond to fertilisers, and we are trying to quantify the effects of this time lag on profitability and willingness to intensify.
I was trained in Wageningen in Plant Sciences and Plant Biotechnology.