SOURCE: Great Quest Fertilizer Ltd.

Great Quest Fertilizer Ltd.

November 04, 2015 09:00 ET

Tests Conclude the GQ Blends Are a Recommended Replacement for Imported Chemical Fertilizers

VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwired - November 04, 2015) - Great Quest Fertilizer Ltd (TSX VENTURE: GQ) (FRANKFURT: GQM) ("the Company") is pleased to announce that it is in receipt of the quantitative results from product trials conducted during the 2014/2015 growing season. As expected, our products continued to perform well generally, in line with, and in a number of cases significantly outperforming the commercially available higher priced imported chemical fertilizers.

  • GQ35 NPK blends perform in line with DAP, recommended replacement
  • Isolated GQ27 performs in line with DAP, recommended replacement
  • GQ Fertilizers outperform in residual impact, recommended use to restore soil health

In head to head comparisons the GQ products exceeded expectations. The Great Quest fertilizer products are semi soluble fertilizers, 71% soluble in mild acid. Comparatively chemical fertilizers are 100% in the same acids, meaning the full nutrient load is not expected to be available to plants that are fed using the GQ phosphate fertilizer. On average the GQ fertilizers had 94% of the yield of chemical fertilizer in directly comparable tests, at 71% of the measured solubility and 50% of the expected market price. The study completed by the Institut d'Economic Rurale (IER), a division of the Ministry of Agriculture, analyzed crop response to multiple formulations of the GQ phosphate fertilizers, as crop dosage recommendations were analyzed. Presented in this release are all of the directly comparable results, other formulations will be made available on SEDAR.

The study comprised of 49 agronomic trials covering the five major agro-ecological regions of Mali, where large-scale commercial agriculture occurs. For 2014/2015, six trials were added in the Northern zones Tombouctou and Gao and though only subsistence agriculture occurs in these areas, the company hopes to participate in agriculturally focused development programs in these areas. Tests were performed on Mali's most important crops, namely Cotton, Corn (Maize), Rice (Irrigated, Rainfed and Submerged varieties), Millet, Sorghum, Cowpea (or Black-Eyed Pea), and Peanut.

The following results compare yields of the listed crops using 100kg/ha dosages of the most common fertilizer blend N 15 - P 15 - K 15. The commercial blends using diammonium phosphate (DAP) for the contained phosphate (P) is compared to the GQ formulation using our processed direct application phosphate for all of the contained P. Both of the blends have identical concentrations of the nitrogen (N), phosphate (P) and potassium (K) nutrients.

The GQ 35 formulations performed in line with the DAP blends with particularly strong showings in rice, peanuts and wheat. Rice is the single most common crop grown in the country. Results concluded there is no statistical difference between the GQ35 and DAP yields, and the lower cost GQ product is a capable replacement for more expensive chemical imports.

Table 1: NPK Blends DAP vs GQ35 - 100kg (15-15-15)

Crop   Region   DAP-NPK (Kg/ha)   GQ35-NPK (Kg/ha)   Relative Performance*
Corn   Bamako   2979   2907   98%
    Koulikoro   3806   3493   92%
    Sikasso   3379   2744   81%
             
Millet   Koulikoro   1900   1767   93%
    Mopti   858   848   99%
    Segou   1597   1424   89%
             
Peanut   Koulikoro   2563   2806   109%
             
Rice (Irrigated)   Gao   8150   7900   97%
    Mopti   7500   6844   91%
    Segou   5139   5310   103%
    Sikasso   5026   3694   73%
             
Rice (Rainfed)   Bamako   1553   1489   96%
    Sikasso   2121   2423   114%
             
Rice (Submerged)   Gao   6460   6092   94%
    Sikasso   1091   1060   97%
             
Sorghum   Bamako   1458   1469   101%
    Kayes   1809   1460   81%
    Koulikoro   2150   1550   72%
    Segou   2576   2428   94%
    Sikasso   1848   1563   85%
             
Wheat   Gao   2051   2274   111%

*Relative Performance is expressed as a ratio of the yield from GQ35NPK to that of DAP NPK

In the same way blends for cotton were compared, however commercial cotton growers use what is called 'complex cotton' NPKSB 14-18-18-6-2 adding sulphur and boron to three major nutrients, at a concentration of 150kg per hectare compared to 100kg used for other crops. Again results concluded there is no statistical difference between the yields using GQ35 and DAP blends, in what was a challenging year for cotton crops. When cost and residual impact are factored (reported in table 4) evidence favours use of GQ35 blends.

Table 2: NPKSB Blends DAP vs GQ35 - 150kg (14-18-18-6-2)

Crop   Region   DAP-NPKSB (Kg/ha)   GQ35-NPKSB (Kg/ha)   Relative Performance*
Cotton   Koulikoro   4570   4766   104%
    Sikasso   1755   1365   78%

*Relative Performance is expressed as a ratio of the yield from GQ35-NPKSB to that of DAP-NPKSB

Total Average Relative Performance     94%

The following results compared the yields of 27% P2O5 medium grade granulated GQ phosphate (GQ 27%) with market available DAP. These trials were not quite equal owing to the Malian researchers mimicking the strategy of regional farmers substituting available DAP fertilizer for the recommended fertilizer super soluable phosphate which is not available in West Africa. Crops fed GQ 27% received 27 kg of P nutrient and no N or K per hectare and the crops fed DAP received 20 Kg of P and 7 kg of N.

Here the GQ 27% marginally outperformed the DAP however, for the cowpea and peanut nitrogen is not required soil nutrient so the larger P dose should give the GQ an advantage.

Table 3: Phosphate Isolated DAP vs GQ27 - 27kg Nutrient

Crop   Region   DAP   GQ 27%   Relative Performance*
Cowpea   Kayes   1827   2050   112%
    Segou   1688   1448   86%
    Mopti   750   634   85%
             
Peanut   Kayes   2428   3074   127%
             
Sorghum   Kayes   1648   1723   105%
Average Performance         103%

*Relative Performance is expressed as a ratio of the yield from GQ 27% to that of DAP

As a part of the study the IER Researchers investigated the residual impact of the fertilizer on crops planted on plots that had used the fertilizer the year before, but had no new fertilizer added for this growing season.

In these trials the GQ fertilizers outperformed, dramatically so in the case of corn. This is expected given the semi-soluble nature of the fertilizer; this allows it to stay in the soil and be available for the next crop. It makes for a very compelling case for farmers to use the GQ formulations, lower upfront cost, equivalent yields in the first year and an opportunity for significant outperformance the longer they use the GQ product.

Table 4: Residual Impact DAP vs GQ

Crop   Region   DAP-NPK   GQ35-NPK   Relative Performance*
Cowpea after Sorghum   Koulikoro   1938   2142   111%
Corn after Cotton   Sikasso   1406   2436   173%
             
Crop   Region   DAP   GQ 27%   Relative Performance*
Sorghum after Cowpea   Kayes   1972   1995   101%
Sorghum after Peanut   Kayes   1648   1723   105%

*Relative Performance is expressed as a ratio of the yield from GQ35NPK to that of DAP NPK

Dr. Lamine Traore, Agronomist and Microbiologist, Research Program Lead from IER, concluded, "The results of this year's trials have demonstrated yet again that the granulated fertilizer products GQ 27% and GQ35-NPK have similar yields to those of the commercially available fertilizers right from the first year of application. The low coefficient of variation observed in the results from region to region where the products were tested, is an indication of the consistent efficiency of the Great Quest products."

Commenting, Jed Richardson President and CEO, "These results reaffirm our belief in the strength of our product. The GQ blends are well poised to provide farmers in Mali and the sub region with a cheaper alternative that matches the performance of expensive imported fertilizers, with an expectation of exceeding that performance for certain crops in some regions, while repairing soil poverty for future crops. Food security is an acute problem in the region and the results indicate that GQ blends may very well become part of the solution."

The technical information in this press release has been reviewed and approved by Louis J. Eskteen, Fellow of the South African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM), a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101. Mr. Esksteen, a consulting Engineer to the Company. He completed his B. Eng. in Extractive Metallurgy -- at North West University, South Africa and has worked on several process management projects in Africa.

About Great Quest

Great Quest Fertilizer Ltd. is a Canadian resource company building a Pan-African agrichemical business focused on the manufacture of farm ready fertilizers from African mineral deposits for African agricultural markets. Local production for regional markets reduces the need for costly transportation and increases availability of high quality fertilizer, to boost yields, increase food security and support African development. Great Quest is listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol GQ, and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the symbol GQM.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF GREAT QUEST FERTILIZER LTD.

"Jed Richardson"

President, Chief Executive Officer and Director

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. The statements that are not historical facts and are forward-looking statements involving known and unknown risks and uncertainties could cause actual results to vary materially from the targeted results. We seek safe harbor.

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