IPNI Outlines the Role of Fertilizer in Achieving the Balancing Act between Agricultural Production

Published online: Nov 15, 2012
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At the ASA, CSSA, SSSA International Annual Meetings held in Cincinnati, International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) China Program Director, Dr. Jiyun Jin addressed China's challenge of balancing both of its critical needs for increased agricultural production and a solid environmental protection plan.

China has successfully managed to increase total grain production in the last 8 years since 2004. However, achieving balanced nutrient management remains a challenge in many regions for various reasons. In those regions with high yielding intensified cropping systems, over use of N is common and accumulation of P, and in some cases K, has occurred. These N and P nutrient accumulations have resulted in relatively low fertilizer use efficiency and in some cases had a negative environmental impact. 

"Considering the fact that most crop production systems in China are highly intensified with high fertilizer input, and the fact that China has to further increase crop production to support a growing population and rapid economic growth, increasing fertilizer use efficiency actually becomes an important task to ensure food security, social stability and environment quality. This goal can only be reached with advances in soil science and fertilization technology," says Dr. Jin. 
According to Dr. Jin, the key components of a successful strategy include: 1) Using all available organic nutrient resources wherever possible; 2) Realizing balanced fertilization to support increased crop yields; 3) Develop advanced technology to improve fertilizer use efficiency, such as slow release fertilizers, site specific nutrient management, fertigation technology, etc.; 4) Developing optimal 4R Nutrient Stewardship practices for fertilization (Right source, Right rate, Right time, Right place), and best management for irrigation, cultivation and other management practices necessary to address the move to larger farm size and mechanization. 

The American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), and Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) is hosting more than 4,000 scientists, professionals, educators, and students at the 2012 International Annual Meetings, "Visions for a Sustainable Planet".