Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt (November 12, 2022) – The Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR) announced the Efficient Fertilizer Consortium today at the United Nations Climate Change Conference. The Efficient Fertilizer Consortium is a public-private partnership conducting research to advance efficient, environmentally beneficial and cost-effective fertilizers and management practices. The Consortium is part of the Global Fertilizer Challenge, an international effort to strengthen food security and reduce agricultural emissions, launched by President Biden earlier this year at the Major Economies Forum.
The effects of COVID-19 and international conflict are driving fertilizer prices to record high levels, increasing farmer costs. These factors, combined with climate change, are causing major disruptions for global food systems, threatening global food security. At the same time, significant quantities of applied nitrogen fertilizers never reach the intended crop, reducing yields and creating environmental concerns. Advancing fertilizer use efficiency and alternatives can reduce the impact of fertilizer shortages on food security, while also reducing nitrous oxide pollution.
Numerous innovative fertilizer products are currently available; however, there is little independent information validating the efficacy of these products and how they compare to other products. Without information about practices and products that work in specific farm systems and climates, farmers cannot make informed decisions about their nutrient needs.
The Efficient Fertilizer Consortium will address these challenges by funding applied research that accelerates development and wider adoption of novel fertilizers that increase nutrient-use efficiency and reduce direct emissions of nitrous oxide and other greenhouse gases from fertilizers. The Consortium is a vehicle for collaboration and exposure to new ideas that also leverages resources, de-risks research and development and accelerates solutions for end users.
“FFAR is excited about this research, which can ultimately help farmers to use fertilizer more efficiently, build soil fertility, decrease input costs, reduce nitrous oxide emissions and improve global food security,” said Dr. Saharah Moon Chapotin, executive director at FFAR. “This Consortium provides a coordinated research structure that leverages collaboration and innovation to address problems facing producers globally.”
FFAR is leveraging $4.45 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and actively seeking matching funders, to amplify investment in pre-competitive research that accelerates novel solutions to common challenges facing the fertilizer industry.
Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research
The Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR) builds public-private partnerships to fund bold research addressing big food and agriculture challenges. FFAR was established in the 2014 Farm Bill to increase public agriculture research investments, fill knowledge gaps and complement USDA’s research agenda. FFAR’s model matches federal funding from Congress with private funding, delivering a powerful return on taxpayer investment. Through collaboration and partnerships, FFAR advances actionable science benefiting farmers, consumers and the environment.