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Increasing Micronutrient Deficiency in the Soil Spurs Demand for Agriculture Micronutrients

   October 14, 2020

Agriculture micronutrients play a critical role in plant vigor, yield, and harvest quality. Science has identified 17 essential nutrients for healthy plant growth. The three most important nutrients, carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, are normally obtained from water and air. The rest are usually expected to come from the soil. Further, six nutrients required in large amounts (macronutrients and secondary macronutrients) include nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Apart from these, there are also eight nutrients required in smaller amounts (zinc, boron, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, and chlorine), dubbed micronutrients—as well as several elements that have been identified as non-essential, yet beneficial plant micronutrients such as cobalt, silicon, selenium, vanadium, etc.

These micronutrients play many complex roles in plant development and health, including photosynthesis, chlorophyll synthesis, respiration, enzyme function, the formation of hormones, metabolic processes, nitrogen fixation. They also reduce nitrates to usable forms, facilitate cell division and development, and regulate water uptake. These micronutrients promote the strong and steady growth of crops to produce higher yields and enhance harvest quality—maximizing a plant’s genetic potential. Their presence can have a great impact on root development, fruit setting and grain filling, seed viability, and plant vigor and health. Micronutrients also benefit plants indirectly by feeding the microorganisms in the soil that perform important steps in various nutrient cycles of the soil-plant root system. However, their deficiency or toxicity can result in stunted growth, low yields, dieback, and even plant death.

Some crops and soil types are more prone to certain types of micronutrient deficiencies than others, for instance, boron deficiency in alfalfa, copper deficiency in wheat, corn, and soybean, nickel deficiency in pecans, and molybdenum deficiency in soybean. Zinc deficiencies frequently occur on calcareous, high-pH, sandy texture, high-phosphorus, and eroded soils. Poorly drained soils may also be deficient in several micronutrients.

Nowadays, globally, 49% of soils are zinc deficient, making it the most prominent micronutrient deficiency worldwide. Boron (B) is the next most deficient micronutrient, with 31% of soils deficient. Apart from these, 15% of the soils are deficient in molybdenum (Mo), 14% in copper (Cu), 10% in manganese (Mn), and 3% in iron (Fe). Currently, China and India are countries with the most micronutrient-deficient soils. In both countries, boron deficiency occurs in more than 30% of agricultural soils, and zinc deficiency is even more widespread, affecting approximately 50% of the soils. Molybdenum deficiency occurs in 15% of agricultural soils in India and 47% in China (IATP, 2012). According to the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT, 2017), the application of the agricultural micronutrients increased crop production by 25% in Africa. Therefore, such increasing micronutrient deficiency in soil fuels the demand for agriculture micronutrients. Meticulous Research, in its latest publication on the ‘Agriculture Micronutrients Market,’ states that the global agriculture micronutrients market is expected to reach USD 12,237.6 million by 2027, at a CAGR of 8.7% during the forecast period, 2020 to 2027. Also, in terms of volume, the global agriculture micronutrients market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.8% from 2020 to 2027 to reach 2,013.3 KT by 2027.


Meticulous Research’s Repository for Agriculture inputs Include:

Organic Fertilizers Market By Source (Animal, Plant, Mineral), Form (Dry, Liquid), Application (Broadcasting, Fertigation, Foliar Application), Crop Type (Cereals and Grains, Fruits and Vegetables) and Geography- Global Forecast to 2023

Soil Conditioners Market By Type (Organic Soil Conditioner And Chemical Conditioner), Soil Type (Sand, Silt, Clay Soil, Loam Soil), Application (Agriculture And Industrial) – Global Opportunity Analysis And Industry Forecast (2018-2023)

Biostimulants Market by Active Ingredient (Acid Based, Extracts based), Application (Foliar Spray, Soil Treatment, Seed Treatment), Formulation (Liquid, Dry), and Crop Type (Row Crops, Fruits and Vegetables) - Global Forecast to 2025

Biopesticides Market by Type (Bioinsecticides, Biofungicides, Bionematicides, Bioherbicides), Application (Foliar Spray, Seed Treatment), Formulation (Liquid and Dry), Origin (Microbial, Biochemical, PIP), Crop Type - Global Forecast to 2025

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