Nitrogenous fertilizer deteriorates soil health and crop productivity in long term concludes Long Term Fertilizer Experiment

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23 March 2022, New Delhi: All India Coordinated Research Project on ‘Long Term Fertilizer Experiments’ of  Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR) over five decades at fixed sites have indicated that continuous use of nitrogenous fertilizer alone had deleterious effect on soil health and crop productivity showing deficiencies of other major and micro nutrients. Even with recommended doses of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium (NPK), deficiency of micro and secondary nutrients has become yield limiting factor over the years. 

Deficient nutrients may also affect plant growth and cause plant physiological disorders. In a written response in Rajya Sabha by Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilizers, Bhagwanth Khuba cited, ICAR has been recommending soil test based balanced and integrated nutrient management through conjunctive use of both inorganic and organic sources (manure, biofertilizers etc.) of plant nutrients for judicious use of chemical fertilizers to improve soil health. In addition, growing leguminous crops and use of Resource Conservation Technologies (RCTs) are also advocated.

On the lines of the sale of chemical fertilizers, retailers/traders, must obtain authorization from notified authority of State Government for sale of organic fertilizers, as per provision of clause 8 of Fertilizer Control Order (FCO), 1985. 

Government is implementing dedicated organic farming schemes of  Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yjana (PKVY) and Mission Organic Value Chain Development in North East Region (MOVCDNER) since 2015-16.  Under these schemes, farmers are primarily encouraged to adopt organic cultivation using various organic inputs including organic fertilizers and provided end to end from production to marketing of organic produce.  Hands-on-training to farmers about on-farm production of organic fertilizers and its use are integral part of these schemes.

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