Dr Bert Quin

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Bert Quin completely a multi-disciplinary PH.D in analtytical  chemistry, biogeochemistry and water quality at Massey University in 1974, before joining the MAF’s Agricultural Research Division (ARD, the predecessor of AgReseach) as a laboratory and soil fertility research scientist at Winchmore in Canterbury. There he initiated research into RPR and demonstrated how superphosphate made from Al/Fe phosphate rocks was lowering effectiveness by 50%.


Bert designed and coordinated the ‘National Series’ of RPR trials which ran on 19 sites throughout NZ over the period 1981-87. By 1984, Bert had been appointed as Chief Scientist for Soil Fertility at the Ruakura Research Centre, where he had oversight of 56 scientific and technical staff. During this time, Bert was appointed as ‘in court’ Scientific Advisor to the Barrister who successfully defended the Maxicrop defamation case.


The excellent results for RPR from the National Series led to Bert being head-hunted as Technical manager for a new Fletcher Challenge fertiliser venture. When the sharemarket crash spelled an end to this, Bert decided he would do it himself. Quinphos was set up with Grant McComb in 1989. Sumitomo of Tokyo took over the company in 1995. This allowed Summit-Quinphos  to grow throughout NZ, and develop SustaiN in the process, and stimulate research demonstrating  the far lower losses of P run-off and leaching with RPR.


Bert left the company in 2005 to concentrate on his ONEsystem® , Spikey® and AlpHa®research projects. Unfortunately, within 3 years  Sumitomo had sold Summit-Quinphos to Ballance.


As Bert’s  new technologies were becoming commercialised, Bert was horrified to see what products were now being sold as ‘RPRs’ by the industry, so when the opportunity `arose to import and distribute the internationally-acclaimed Algerian RPR in 2018, he took it with both hands. Quinfert is now the fastest-growing fully-independent New Zealand-owned fertiliser company in NZ, with 5 depots in the North Island and 3 in the South.




RPR Series 1. Economic and environmental benefits of reactive phosphate rock (RPR)

Both the economic and environmental benefits of using RPR as the source of phosphate on New Zealand’s soils have been deliberately understated by the fertiliser manufacturing industry in the past decade. With no significant independent importation and scientific promotion of RPR, farmers who want to keep using it have found it increasingly difficult to access true RPR at a reasonable cost.  >>MORE