The increasing demand for food has encouraged growers to increase crop production. However, the increasing use of synthetic fertilizers deteriorates the soil and impacts agricultural produce. The use of biofertilizers in organic farming is gaining traction globally. Intensive agricultural practices lead to soil fatigue and the gradual deterioration of soil health. Therefore, governments worldwide are undertaking initiatives that aim to promote the use of organic farming techniques and biofertilizers for crop production to conserve soil health, reduce the utilization of chemical inputs, and increase the utilization of biological & organic inputs. For instance, in India, the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), and the Ministry of Science and Technology promote the research, development, and commercialization of biofertilizers and biopesticides. The Government of India supports organic farming by providing subsidies for new biofertilizer/biopesticide units. It provides grants of INR 4.5 million for building biocontrol laboratories and INR 2 million for procuring equipment for producing biocontrol agents, including biofertilizers. In addition, the Central Government organization NITI Aayog supports and promotes the use of biofertilizers and organic fertilizers.
Similarly, China has also realized the harms of using chemical fertilizers and pesticides. The country launched the ‘Zero Growth on Chemical Fertilizer and Pesticide by 2020,’ an action plan to reduce the use of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. China has also started a collaborative effort on pollution issues with the U.S. EPA, and one outcome of this collaboration was adapting registration procedures to favor biofertilizers.
The U.S. government strongly supports the country’s organics industry. The government has implemented various national plans to promote and develop organic agriculture. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has launched the National Organic Programme (NOP) to implement commerce facilities in the organic food processing sector. It also develops and implements national and global standards for organic production. The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is engaged in education, extension, and organic agriculture research in the U.S. It also develops innovative management strategies for organic producers in the country. Moreover, various programs/projects such as Organic Transitions (ORG, FY 2001-Present) and the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI, FY 2009-Present) of the NIFA provide financial assistance to organic producers and help them solve critical organic agriculture issues through the integration of research, education, and extension activities. Such government initiatives that support the development and implementation of research, extension, and higher education programs to advance organic agriculture and allied areas support the demand for biofertilizers in the country.
Furthermore, in 2022, the Italian parliament approved a new law, the ‘Organic Made in Italy’ label, and developed a national strategy to strengthen the country’s position in international markets and formulate global policies for developing organic agriculture. The strategy also aims to increase domestic organic consumption, implement environmental & public health policies through organic agriculture, improve the environmental sustainability of organic land holdings, strengthen, enhance, and develop organic production & supply chains, and introduce organic principles and techniques in non-productive sectors to reduce their impact on the environment & public health. Such government policies and initiatives are expected to support and expand Italy’s organics sector, driving the demand for biofertilizers.
Thus, recognizing the ill effects of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, such as the development of pest resistance, pest resurgence, the outbreak of secondary pests, and chemical residues in food, feed, fodder, soil, air, and water resulting in human health hazards and ecological imbalances, most countries have amended their policies to promote organic farming, minimize the use of chemical fertilizers & pesticides, and promote the use of biofertilizers. Such government initiatives are expected to drive the growth of the biofertilizers market in the coming years. Meticulous Research®, in its latest publication on the ‘Global Biofertilizers Market,’ states that the biofertilizers market is projected to reach $3.2 billion by 2029, at a CAGR of 11.5% during the forecast period 2022–2029.
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