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Biofertilizers Could Reduce Brazil's Dependence On International Markets

2022-04-21


Biofertilizers could reduce Brazil's dependence on international markets


Brazil now faces a serious fertilizer crisis because Russia used to be the biggest supplier of the product. One way out of the fertilizer crisis is to invest in biofertilizers.


"In the last three years, there has been a huge trend for this type of investment because it is a rapidly expanding market," stressed Bernardo Lipski, agricultural technology researcher at Lactec Technology Institute (ICT).


According to Itau BBA estimates, soya acreage is expected to increase by just 0.5 per cent by 2023, reflecting the risk of higher production costs and shortages of agricultural inputs. The fertilizer crisis has highlighted Brazil's dependence on these products. Although the country is one of the world's largest exporters of agribusiness, it has not been showily productive of its own.


"Now is the time to make this investment, especially considering the increased cost of fertilizers due to the war," Bernardo said.


Agriculture and sustainability


One example of a sustainable input that can be used is so-called rock dust. In rock technology mineral powders such as basalt are applied to the soil for remineralization. In addition to helping to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the continued use of the process tends to regenerate the soil in the long run, making it more fertile and providing essential nutrients for plants.


Another trend is biofertilizers produced from organic matter. "At Lactec, we are committed to producing microalgae biomass, which not only nourish plantations but also stimulate their growth and development," explained the researchers.


Algal biomass has a wide range of uses: it can be used for everything from substrate nutrition to water treatment, detoxification and removal of toxic metals. It is a sustainable alternative, not only because it does not pollute the soil, but also because it can be grown using polluting organic waste, such as organic matter from livestock and industrial by-products.


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