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Global Initiative Launched for Comprehensive Fertiliser Data Collection

The International Fertilizer Association, in collaboration with agri benchmark, has embarked on an ambitious project to gather comprehensive data on global fertiliser usage.

Agri benchmark, a non-profit network of agricultural economists, operates under the coordination of the German Thunen Institute and the non-profit company global networks.

The initiative aims to provide decision-makers with reliable and actionable insights into major trends in global crop production.

The project's primary objective is to collect detailed data on the quantity of fertiliser used in key crops across all major fertiliser-consuming countries. This endeavour seeks to bring transparency to the use of fertilisers in global crop production, benefiting stakeholders and the public alike.

Agri benchmark emphasises the critical role of fertilisers in enhancing crop growth and securing global food security. However, it also acknowledges the environmental risks associated with inefficient fertiliser use. Notably, nitrogen (N) is identified as a significant contributor to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in agriculture.

Key outputs of this joint project include specific fertiliser usage per tonne of crop output, regional and national averages in nutrient application per hectare of key field and perennial crops, and nutrient application per hectare of grassland. These crops collectively account for up to 70% of arable land use. The project will also provide estimates for national fertiliser use in crop production and grassland.

Dr. Yelto Zimmer, head of agri benchmark, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration with the IFA, stating, "We are very excited to be expanding our collaboration with the IFA to work on the global roll-out in monitoring fertiliser use." He emphasised the project's contribution to agri benchmark's goal of becoming a knowledge hub in global crop production economics.

Achim Dobermann, Chief Scientist at the International Fertilizer Association, highlighted the project's significance, saying, "This project will systematically collect information on fertiliser use and other important agronomic practices, which we urgently need for improving global and national databases on nutrient use, balance and efficiency."

The global roll-out of the project is planned over three years, focusing on different global regions each year. This comprehensive data collection effort is expected to significantly enhance understanding and management of fertiliser use worldwide, contributing to more sustainable agricultural practices.

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