Special Issue "Plastic Use in Agriculture: Realizing Their Benefits and Reducing Their Environmental Impact"

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Ecosystem, Environment and Climate Change in Agriculture".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Davey Jones
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Natural Resources, Bangor University, Deiniol Road, Bangor, Gwynedd, LL57 2UW, UK
Interests: microplastics; soil health; greenhouse gas emissions
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Agricultural food production has benefited hugely from the use of plastics derived from fossil fuels. These plastics are vital in containerized production, hydroponic systems, livestock production, and many field-grown crops. In addition, they are important in the packaging and transport of both vegetable and animal-based products to market. Despite their benefits, there is increasing concern, however, about the impacts of macro- and microplastics in the environment. Contamination of the terrestrial, freshwater, and marine biosphere by microplastics is now widely recognized as one of the world’s greatest pollution threats. Microplastics (plastics <5 mm) originate from the fragmentation of large plastic litter or from direct environmental emission. Their potential impacts on terrestrial ecosystems remain largely unexplored despite the overwhelming evidence of their negative effect on marine organisms. Most plastics arriving in the oceans were produced, used, and often disposed on land. Consequently, it is within terrestrial systems that microplastics might actually be of greatest concern. This has led to the development of a range of bioplastics which can be sourced from renewable materials and which are designed to rapidly degrade in soil. Despite this, the benefits of plastic and bioplastics still need to be thoroughly quantified and their impact on the environment balanced against this. To understand the current state, unrealized potential, and challenges of this field, this Special Issue invites recent findings related to the use, misuse, and reuse of plastics in agriculture. Relevant literature includes (but is not limited to):

  • Quantifying the production and socioeconomic benefits of using conventional plastics and/or bioplastics in agriculture;
  • Understanding the environmental impact of plastics and/or bioplastics in the context of agriculture;
  • Designing effective ways to reuse or recycle agricultural plastics; and
  • Demonstrating the benefits of alternatives to plastics use in agriculture.

Prof. Dr. Davey Jones
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agriculture is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • plastic
  • microplastic
  • mulch film
  • LDPE
  • HDPE
  • polyethylene
  • polypropylene
  • plasticizer
  • life cycle assessment
  • waste disposal
  • plastic recycling
  • economic analysis
  • soil health
  • environmental footprint
  • food packaging
  • waste policy
  • containerized agriculture

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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