Arable land is one of the most important resources for agricultural production. Over the years, numerous cultivating techniques have emerged, which have resulted in the overutilization of land resources. This increased usage and constantly increasing demand have resulted in land exploitation, resulting in the degradation of land quality and a decrease in quantity.
According to the Global Land Assessment of Degradation published by the United Nations' Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), nearly two billion hectares worldwide have been degraded since the 1950s. Land degradation is one of the world's most pressing environmental problems and will continue to worsen without rapid remedial action. Globally, about 25% of the total land area has been degraded. When land is degraded, soil carbon and nitrous oxide are released into the atmosphere, making land degradation a significant contributor to climate change. Scientists have warned that 24 billion tons of fertile soil are lost annually due to unsustainable agriculture practices (Source: Global Environment Facility). If this trend continues, 95% of the land areas could become degraded by 2050.
Africa and Latin America have the highest proportion of degraded agricultural land. Countries whose economy is largely dependent on agriculture have registered negative trends in land availability. The latest data published by the Indian Agriculture Ministry shows that as many as 20 states in India reported a decrease in upto 790,000 hectares of cultivable land in the last 4– 5 years. This decrease is mainly attributed to the diversion of cultivable land for non-agricultural purposes, including construction, industries, and other development activities.
According to the World Bank, by 2050, the world will have more than 9.8 billion mouths to feed, an increase of around 40% from current levels. This increase in food demand is expected to exert immense pressure on the already depleting arable land. Therefore, it is imperative to increase agricultural production with the help of conventional and nonconventional crop protection tools. Seed treatment prior to sowing enables precise and efficient protection of the seed and resulting seedling during the early stages of its growth. Seed treatment also helps to protect the crop from insects & pathogens, subsequently increasing crop yield and quality.
Seed protection products are applied over the surface of the germinating seed, which eliminates the need to apply products over entire fields; this reduces soil depletion due to off-target exposure and limits animals and humans from exposure to crop protection products. Thus, the growing global food demand coupled with the decline in arable land is expected to drive the growth of the global seed treatment market.
According to the latest publication of Meticulous Research®, the seed treatment market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.9% in the next seven years to be valued at $11.68 billion by 2029.
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