Minimum dataset and metadata guidelines for soil-test correlation and calibration research

Nathan A. Slaton, Sarah E. Lyons, Deanna L. Osmond, Sylvie M. Brouder, Steve W. Culman, Gerson Drescher, Luciano C. Gatiboni, John Hoben, Peter J.A. Kleinman, Joshua M. McGrath, Robert O. Miller, Austin Pearce, Amy L. Shober, John T. Spargo, Jeff J. Volenec

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Soil-test correlation and calibration data are essential to modern agriculture, and their continued relevance is underscored by the expansion of precision farming and the persistence of sustainable soil management priorities. In support of transparent, science-based fertilizer recommendations, we seek to establish a core set of required and recommended information for soil-test P and K correlation and calibration studies, a minimum dataset, building on previous research. The Fertilizer Recommendation Support Tool (FRST) project team and collaborators are developing a national database that will support a soil-test-based nutrient management decision aid tool. The FRST team includes over 80 scientists from 37 land-grant universities, two state universities, one private university, three federal agencies, two private not-for-profit organizations, and one state department of agriculture. The minimum dataset committee developed and vetted a robust set of factors fo minimum dataset consideration that includes information on soil sample collection and processing, soil chemical and physical properties, experimental design and statistical analyses, and metadata about the trial, production system, and field management. The minimum dataset provides guidelines for essential information to meet the primary objective of knowledge synthesis, including meta-analysis and systemic reviews, but permits researchers the flexibility to satisfy local, state, and regional objectives. Ultimately, this consensus-driven effort seeks to establish a standard that ensures the maximum utility and impact of modern correlation and calibration studies for developing crop nutrition recommendations that improve productivity and profitability for the crop producer, while reducing environmental impacts of nutrient losses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-33
Number of pages15
JournalSoil Science Society of America Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. Soil Science Society of America Journal published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Soil Science Society of America

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Soil Science


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