In light of our latest product introduction, the AvaSpec-Mini-NIR, we will share some application examples for this instrument in the weeks leading up to its official release.

This week’s topic: near-infrared spectroscopy in fertilizer analysis.

Organic fertilizer, also known as manure, is used in agriculture to provide nutrition to crops. To properly administer manure to the soil, knowledge of the nutrient content is required. Overapplication of manure nutrients is known to cause environmental damage, such as water pollution, while underapplication can reduce crop quality and yield.

NIR spectroscopy can be used to analyze mineral and nutrient contents, including nitrogen, carbon, ammonia, and potassium in various types of manure samples. This analysis can then be utilized to create insight on the composition of the manure administered to the crops and to adjust the used amount accordingly.

Compared to the conventional method of using chemical analysis to determine nutrient content in manure, NIR spectroscopy is faster, more efficient, less labour-intense and non-destructive, which decreases waste of product. It also makes the use of harmful chemicals obsolete, which makes it a much more environmentally friendly option.


The AvaSpec-Mini-NIR is a compact, versatile near-infrared spectrometer that can be used in many different applications but is especially well suited for agricultural applications.