Seed priming with gas plasma activated water in Ethiopia’s “orphan” crop tef (Eragrostis tef)

Lena Fatelnig, Solomon Chanyalew , Mahilet Tadesse , Worku Kebede , Nigusu Hussein , Felipe Iza , Zerihun Tadele, Gerhard Leubner-Metzger, Tina Steinbrecher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tef (Eragrostis tef) is a cereal grass and a major staple crop of Ethiopia and Eritrea. Despite its significant importance in terms of production, consumption, and cash crop value, tef has been understudied and its productivity is low. In this study, tef grains have undergone different priming treatments to enhance seed vigour and seedling performance. A conventional hydropriming and a novel additive priming technology with gas plasma activated water have been used and tef grains were then subjected to germination performance assays and accelerated ageing. Tef priming increases the germination speed and vigour of the grains. Priming with gas plasma activated water retained the seed storage potential after ageing, therefore presenting an innovative environmental-friendly seed technology with the prospect to address variable weather conditions and ultimately food insecurity. Seed technology opens new possibilities to enable precision-agriculture that leads to increased productivity of tef crop farming to achieve a secure and resilient tef food system and economic growth in Ethiopia by sustainable intensification of agriculture beyond breeding.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2024


  • Eragrostis tef
  • plasma agriculture
  • gas plasma priming
  • seed priming
  • seed germination
  • accelerated ageing
  • seed technology
  • orphan crop

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