As global demand rises at a rapid pace, smallholder farmers look for new ways to improve their yields…

…Investment in fertilizer research comprises only 0.1 percent of companies’  total revenue, according to Dr. Amit Roy, president and CEO of the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC). Yet, R&D companies spend an estimated 9 percent of their revenue on seed research.

‘In terms of food production, what we now have to do is find ways to match new fertilizers with new varieties of seed that are being developed,’ Dr. Roy says. ‘In order to do so, we have to go beyond chemistry and get knowledge from areas where there is advanced research with advances in science and technology.’

Breakthrough technology could come through examining research that has been done in other fields such as the biosciences and pharmaceuticals. The problem is efficiency, he says. New fertilizers must complement newly developed seeds, and the fertilizer should release the nutrients only when the plant needs it to reduce runoff and over-usage...”

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