Implications of Reduced Fertilizer Consumption for Food Security

The short-term impact of reduced fertilizer consumption is a threat for a significant reduction in crop yields in the next harvest, prompting lower food production and ultimately increasing the number of people at risk of hunger and starvation. Modelling by Gro Intelligence conducted in July 2022 implies that in IFA’s pessimistic scenario, reduced nitrogen fertilizer application would result in a 1.4% decline in global maize production, a 1.5% reduction in rice production and a 3.1% reduction in wheat production. The yield impact of reduced application of phosphorous and potassium is also likely to be significant, especially if sustained in the medium-term. The outlook for food security will be underpinned by the success of actions to prioritize fertilizer application in line with nutrient requirements.

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