Incitec Pivot benefits as fertilisers become precious commodities in times of increasing global demand.

Fertiliser giant Incitec Pivot, taking advantage of soaring fertiliser prices, has embarked on a friendly takeover of the explosives company Dyno Nobel Ltd. “The merged group will be able to leverage Dyno Nobel’s significant North American manufacturing capacity and extensive distribution platform to increase sales into the fertilizer market,” Dyno Nobel said in a statement.

The takeover is aimed at benefiting from soaring demand for fertiliser and explosives driven by a dramatic upturn in global food demand, biofuels growth and the minerals boom. The chance for flexibility and opportunity to diversify, having added capacity for further penetration into new markets makes the consolidation of these companies an important step for each.

As mentioned in a previous post, (March 9), fertilisers are scarce resources that represent a significant part of farm costs but are nutrients essential for plant growth.

A recent report, Global Focus report – Fertilisers a precious commodity, by leading international food and agribusiness bank Rabobank, gave an analysis of the growth in demand for agricultural fertilisers and the implications for the farm sector. ( Pdf can be downloaded from the link above.) It approached the issue of scarcity by positing that there is a need for greater efficiency in the use of fertilisers. In fact, the report advocates that

“in addition to better managing the application and use of fertiliser, there is scope for investigation into the use of more ‘traditional’ fertilisers such as animal manures and composted material in conventional agricultural systems.”

This is particularly important in developing countries where the rise in costs of fertilisers is not easily absorbed and the soils may be poor. The growth of Biodynamic farming methods that employ traditional animal manures has been used in developing countries with success thereby liberating these farmers from the increasing price demands of agribusinesses. Peter Proctor, a soil scientist, known as the “father of the modern Biodynamic Farming movement” in New Zealand, has worked with farmers in India. Biodynamic agriculture is changing the landscape, releasing entire communities from the debt cycles and lands affected by chemical farming.

One Man, One Cow, One Planet – is a film that follows biodynamic farmer Peter Proctor’s journey to India and his work with marginal farmers to revive this traditional agricultural method. It screened recently in Melbourne and is worth seeing. (Link above for details).

Companies like Incitec Pivot are well positioned to benefit from rises in prices of fertilisers while marginalised farmers in the third world become enmeshed in a cycle of debt from the ever spiraling costs of producing food crops. Biodynamic Farming offers this marginalised section of society a sustainable method of farming that offers self-sufficiency and biological diversity. In addition, indigenous seed varieties and breeds best suited to local conditions. Fertilisers are precious commodities that are being priced beyond the reach of poor countries, it is time we gave some thought to how such scarce commodities are used.

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~ by abstraktbiblos on Wednesday, 12 March, 2008.

One Response to “Incitec Pivot benefits as fertilisers become precious commodities in times of increasing global demand.”

  1. […] throughstones […]

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