"The number of undernourished people in the world remains unacceptably high at about 925 million. Global food security issues exist now, and are especially of concern looking forward as world population is expected to increase by about 35% over the next 40 years. Agricultural output will need to significantly increase to accommodate the growing population. Most of the increase is expected to come from producing more on existing farmland (i.e., intensification), although some new farmland will likely be needed. Boosting crop yields and closing the gap between actual and attainable yield can be achieved by the implementation and advancement of numerous practices and technologies, including nutrient management practices and fertilizer technologies. An evaluation of long-term studies has shown that the average percent of yield attributable to fertilizer inputs generally ranged from about 40 to 60% in temperate climates (USA and England), and tended to be much higher in the tropics. All things considered, inorganic fertilizer plays a critical role in world food security, but it must be recognized that highest yields are in some systems the result of using both organic and inorganic nutrient sources. Adoption of the 4R principles-right nutrient source at the right rate, right time, and right place-help ensure appropriate use of nutrient resources and optimized productivity."

Food Security and the Role of Fertilizer in Supporting it



  1. People call it in different ways: the new green revolution; renewed farm focus; global community's new commitment to agriculture. But the message is clear: while the agricultural landscape has been experiencing rapid changes, we must all adapt in order to attune ourselves to the call of the...
  2. Anaerobic digestion, or biodigestion, involves the microbial degradation of organic materials in an oxygen-free environment. Feedstocks for anaerobic digestion include livestock manures, crop residues, culled fruit and vegetables, food waste, and other organic by-products. The process produces...
  3. Ressource principale
    20/01/2009 All plants need certain mineral elements for proper growth, development, and maintenance. The basic structure of all organisms is built of carbon (C), oxygen (O) and hydrogen (H). Plants obtain these elements from water (H2O) in the soil and carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air, so no input is...
  4. 20/06/2017 No, fertilizer as we normally think of it doesn’t grow on trees! But agroforesters and other agriculturalists are using this term for any tree that helps improve the quality of soil. One great exampleis the Apple Ring Acacia (Faidherbia albida). The Apple Ring Acacia is an unusual tropical...
  5. 20/01/2005 With all the instant gratification available to the consumer these days, nature seems to take a long time. Stabilizing your soil, pasture and livestock areas don’t happen over night. Nevertheless, Microbial Management with foliar sprays and fertilizers can help in the transition.
  6. 20/01/2005 In our training seminars, every student gets a bottle of EME. We teach them by making it in class. They also are trained on how to use their bag of five different soil amendments. This encourages students to use them in the project that they have already started. Some students are just starting...
  7. 20/09/2011 This study, conducted at ECHO during the Summer of 2011, was carried out to compare eggplant fruiting response to varying rates of a standard mineral fertilizer versus 6 month old compost with 25% cow manure and 75% plant matter (evenly split between woody and green, leafy material). The high...
  8. 01/07/2004 We read an article in Appropriate Technology (Volume 28, No. 3; July/September 2001) about farmers in Niger who used bottle caps to distribute tiny amounts of fertilizer. Despite drought conditions, farmers who used this technique harvested 50 to 100 percent more millet than those who did not.
  9. 20/10/2010 Input from the ECHO network concerning the use of urine as a fertilizer.
  10. 20/01/2005 Green fertilizer is Fundamental #5. It feeds the next crop efficiently. As you plow crop residue into the soil it will eventually become humus and fertilizer for following crops. It is a form of composting, in which materials do not need to be transported to a mixing/composting site. You could...
  11. 19/01/1997 Information about making bonemeal fertilizer from animal bones.
  12. 20/04/2014 Comfrey is a unique perennial plant that requires minimal maintenance after planting and that can give high, sustained yields of nutrient-rich leaves for use as fertilizer, animal feed and more. It is high in potassium (K) and other micronutrients, and seems to improve fruiting and disease...
  13. 20/07/2008 Farmers in Nigerused bottle caps to distribute tiny amounts of fertilizer in each planting hole. Coca cola bottle caps hold 6 grams (0.2 oz) of fertilizer, and one capful was used for two to three plants.
  14. ABSTRACT - Journal of Composting Science and Utilization, 2017 Earthworm digested wastes (vermicompost) are being produced in increasing quantities to make farming sustainable. A study was carried out for two consecutive years (2007–09) at the Agricultural Experimental Farm of Indian Statistical...
  15. 01/08/2017 Face aux défis auxquels les petits exploitants font face en matière d’intrants agricoles, et vu les limites de l’engrais minéral, le centre d’impact de ECHO pour l’Afrique de l’Ouest a équipé les fermiers de connaissances pratiques et économiques. L’une d’elles: la technique de fabrication de l’...
  16. 19/07/1994 Nitrogen fertilizer should not be applied to trees and shrubs directly after transplanting.
  17. 01/04/2010 Faidherbia albida exhibits reverse leaf phenology, losing its leaves at the beginning of the rainy season just as farmers want full sun for their crops. While most other species flower before or during the rains, the apple ring acacia flowers and leafs out at the end of the rainy season providing...
  18. Ressource principale 01/01/1995 Fourteen chapters address various aspects of human waste or, as the editor puts it, the "by-products," of our increasingly urban and industrial society. Topics range from the societal, political, and regulatory issues associated with land application to more technical issues such as the negative...
  19. 05/10/2017
  20. ABSTRACT - Journal of Compost Science and Utilization, 2017 The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of application of different organic fertilizers (general organic fertilizer, GOF; biogas residue, BR; refined organic fertilizer, ROF) as compared to no fertilizer on the composition of...
  21. 20/01/2006 An expanding world population and the urgency of eradicating hunger and malnutrition call for determined policies and effective actions to ensure sustainable growth in agricultural productivity and production. Assured access to nutritionally adequate and safe food is essential for individual...
  22. Abstract -Procedia Engineering, 2012 The number of undernourished people in the world remains unacceptably high at about 925 million. Global food security issues exist now, and are especially of concern looking forward as world population is expected to increase by about 35% over the next 40...
  23. 20/07/2010 Alkalinity of Urine. Urine in storage can reach a pH of 9.0. HIV/AIDS. A person reading a draft of the urine article asked whether HIV/AIDS would be a concern with the use of urine as a fertilizer. Controlling the Odor of Urine. Dr. Arnat Tancho recommends mixing a small amount of microbial...
  24. The Handbook of Manures and Fertilizers is an attempt to disseminate information to the farmers. It contains useful information on the ways of increasing manurial resources, the different kinds of manures and fertilizers, their composition, their role in the nutrition of crops, methods and time...
  25. AccessAgriculture Training Video Le terrain dans le district de Tororo en Ouganda a été intensément utilisé et la fertilité du sol est faible et en déclin. Cette vidéo montre une solution possible - en utilisant l'urine comme engrais. Arabic English French
  26. Android Welcome to the Fertilizer Optimizer app! This app will assist you in using fertilizer more efficiently to optimize your fertilizer investments. The app will ask you for information on crops grown, area planted, expected crop sale prices, fertilizers costs and the budget you have to invest...
  27. AccessAgriculture Training Video Une vidéo de 22 minutes pour expliquer l'importance de combiner des ressources organiques, des engrais minéraux et des variétés améliorées de manière adaptée aux conditions locales. Des cas pratiques tirés de diverses zones agro-écologiques du Mali, Niger,...
  28. AccessAgriculture Training Video Pour résoudre les problèmes de la pauvre fertilité du sol et lutter contre la mauvaise herbe striga avec des moyens limités, certaines producteurs de Niger font la micro dose aux cultures de sorgho et de mil. Comparativement à l’application à la volée, l’apport...
  29. AccessAgriculture Training Video Lorsque l'urée est appliqué dans la lame d’eau, il se dissout facilement et l'azote se perd rapidement et échappe donc à la plante de riz. Autrement dit, environ deux sur trois sacs de d'urée appliqué de cette manière échappent à la plante. Par contre, le...
  30. Abstract, Biogeosciences, 2015 There are national and regional efforts aimed at increasing fertilizer use in sub‐Saharan Africa, where nitrogen (N) inputs must be increased by an order of magnitude or more to reach recommended rates. Fertilizer inputs increase N availability and cycling rates and...
  31. 01/07/1984 One aspect of ECHO's ministry is behind the scenes for most of our readers. We help college professors and students in the sciences identify research projects that would be of benefit to the small Third World farmer. Several ideas that could be done at an undergraduate level are written up in...
  32. In this article we examine the health hazards posed by nitrogen fertiliser use in developing countries and particularly three serious human disease, methaemoglobinaemia, gastric and bladder cancer. We then discuss the losses of nitrogen from fertilisers to water and the atmosphere and the...
  33. 01/01/1960 This publication discusses the creation of mulch and how to use it.
  34. In the framework of FAO's mandate the main purpose of this consulation has been to compile as much information as possible on the use of organic materials as fertilizers and to make recommendations for follow-up activities at the international and national level in the field of practical...
  35. If you?re an agronomist, horticulturalist, plant and soil scientist, breeder, or soil microbiologist, you?ll want to read Nutrient Use in Crop Production to find everything you need to know about judicious nutrient management and maximizing nutrient utilization in the agricultural landscape. In...
  36. Nitrogen pollution of lakes, rivers, and oceans by human urine is a growing problem.Liquid Goldshows how urine can safely be used to grow food, fuel, fiber, and beautiful landscapes while protecting the environment and providing free and safe fertilizer. Featuring a short history of urine use—...
  37. This manual is the first in a series planned by the Regional Project, designed to give detailed, practical advice on the various methodologies of organic recycling.
  38. Readily available plant and animal residues, even those you must pay for, can supply an extremely valuable source of plant foods that over the years will reward you with better soil better crops, and reduced grocery bills. And that means money in your pocket. But before you can expect those...
  39. It is felt that FAO should take the lead to make suggestions and propositions for obtaining a certain harmonisation of methods on a regional basis. Therefore this booklet contains a choice of analytical methods, which have been applied in various conditions and which were judiciously selected. It...
  40. In the present guide certain questions are pose, and replies have been given which, we hope, are as clear and precise as possible. This document essentially constitutes an explanation of the role of phosphorus in the living world, in the soil, and in the life of platns, as well as the means of...
  41. Papers presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Agronomy in Chicago, Illinois, Dec. 6, 1978. Here the authors review the current state of knowledge on the potential for N loss and the manner in which inhibitors function. They then offer an in-depth report on how inhibitors have...
  42. No pseudoscience, just hard data presented in a well organized manner. This is a great book for the farmer, gardener, or landscaper who has a working knowledge of fertilizing and wishes to take their expertise to the next level.
  43. Ressource principale
    01/01/2014 Pour obtenir une productivité agricole élevée dans les tropiques au meilleur coût économique et écologique, il faut bien comprendre le rapport entre les nutriments présents dans le sol et la productivité des cultures. Pour ce faire, il nous faut remettre en question certaines idées reçues. La...

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