A MORE IMPORTANT RESOURCE THAN EVER, TO ENSURE THE FOOD THE WORLD NEEDS
October 13 is Global Fertilizer Day, commemorating the two German scientists who registered the first patent. This is a central development to boost agricultural productivity and care for a key resource such as soil.
Bahía Blanca, October 12, 2020 – This year, more than ever, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the strategic importance of food production for humanity was made clear. In this production chain, fertilizers play a central role, because they make it possible to increase yields and, at the same time, take care of a key resour
ce such as soil.
This Tuesday, October 13 is Global Fertilizer Day, an appropriate date to recall these concepts, which are more topical than ever. “At Profertil, as a leading company in the production of nitrogen fertilizers in Argentina, we believe that our role is also to highlight the strategic importance of these issues and to work so that the entire agricultural chain is increasingly aware of them”, states Federico Veller, general manager.
This day was established by the International Fertilizer Association (IFA), which groups the most important producers in the world, among them Profertil. IFA recalls that, without them, one in two people would starve, as agricultural productivity would be drastically reduced.
October 13 was chosen because on that day, in 1908, the German chemist Franz Haber registered a patent for a process that allowed the synthesis of ammonia from nitrogen in the air. This work was later completed by his colleague Carl Bosch (also German) who produced it in an industrial way and for this reason it is now known as the “Haber-Bosch” process. They both won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their work.
In Argentina, nitrogen fertilizers also play a central role, particularly in strategic crops for agricultural sustainability, such as wheat and maize. The most used fertilizer with both of them is precisely urea, which Profertil produces in its plant of Bahía Blanca. But not only do they play a key role in increasing productivity, they are also fundamental in replenishing the soil with the nutrients that plants draw during their growth.
In line with the importance it assigns to this key resource, the company will sponsor the XXVII Argentin
e Congress of Soil Science, which will be held in Corrientes from October 13 to 16, under the theme “Challenges for sustainable production and development”.
“The event will analyze the challenge of maintaining and increasing the productive capacity of the soil over time, generating the necessary goods for the development of humanity, without affecting the soil as a fundamental part of the environment for future generations,” said Mirta Toribio, head of the Research and Development area.
In this sense, the specialist reminded the importance of “working on the efficient management of nutrients in the different productive proposals, adjusting to the potential of the crops in each area of the country.
To achieve this, she explained that “it is important to use the so-called Best Management Practices (BMP), which include determining the appropriate dose (based on diagnostic tools such as soil analysis), choosing sources with balanced nutrition in mind, and applying them at the right time and in the right way. In this way, it ensures “a greater efficiency of use of nutrients while caring for the environment,” she added.
By the year 2050, 70% more food will have to be produced if the demand of the world population is to be satisfied. The United Nations recognizes that almost 80% of that growth will come from an increase in crop yields, which in turn will come from greater agricultural intensification.
The challenge is to achieve this by reducing the environmental impact and preserving key natural resources such as soil. Fertilizers play a central role in this process.