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Sustainable Production

Dr Trish Fraser

Team Leader

I was born and raised on a mixed cropping farm in the Black Isle in Northern Scotland. I completed my undergraduate degree - Joint Honours in Plant and Soil Sciences - at the University of Aberdeen in 1988 and then was fortunate to receive a scholarship to continue my studies at Lincoln University in New Zealand. There I completed a PhD in soil science on the "Fate of Nitrogen under an animal urine patch". In August 1992, I joined the newly formed Institute of Crop & Food Research as a Soil Scientist (soil biology focus). Apart from three stints on maternity leave (to look after our three daughters) I have remained working for the same company ever since - these days (after Crop & Food Research merged with HortResearch in 2008) it is called Plant & Food Research. Over the last 30 years, I have studied a range of different topics such as: the role of earthworms and the impact of management practices on their activities and survival; nitrate leaching from cropping/vegetable systems; crop residue management practices; impacts of different tillage practices on soil properties; and assessing biological nitrification inhibition in soil as influenced by urine of animals fed plantain or plantain root exudates. I was also a very active member of the NZ Society of Soil Science Executive Council for about 24 years, including over 20 years as Secretary and 2 years as the first female President.