Yara is engaged in the global pursuit of food security. We leverage our global position and agronomic knowledge to influence policy frameworks, initiate value chain partnerships and improve agricultural productivity.
Yara is closely connected to the global challenge of food security. Food is one of the three focal areas in which we can make a substantial impact. With more than a hundred years experience of the production and application of mineral fertilizers, food production lies at the core of our business.
Feeding a world population estimated at 9 billion people in 2050 is commonly considered one of the major tasks of our time. Population growth, and the increase in food consumption resulting from economic growth, require global food production 70 percent higher than today.
This formidable production increase has to be achieved without depleting natural resources: Increasing farmland area should be avoided, as land use change cause global warming, and fresh water withdrawal for agriculture already conflicts with other uses.
World agriculture is responsible for a major share of greenhouse gas emissions, which in turn affects agricultural productivity. Yara advocates that agriculture can be part of the solution. Yield levels can be improved, which will contribute to reduced deforestation. New technology and modern farm management can have a substantial impact on the carbon footprint of fertilization.
There is more to food security than the amount of food being produced., In theory, enough food is already being produced worldwide to offset hunger. However, food security requires enough food of acceptable nutritional quality to be available at affordable prices, at any time – wherever people live.
Today, about a billion people are food insecure, mainly in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. About half the world’s hungry are themselves farmers, living as subsistence farmers with outputs inadequate to provide a nutritious diet, let alone a surplus to generate income.
Until now, the world’s farmers have managed to increase yields, keeping pace with population growth. By and large, this has been due to applying modern technologies and also by employing more land. Today, we can’t rely on further expansion of farmland. The solutions have to be found in improved productivity based on farming technologies underpinning sustainable agriculture.
The main global response has to be geared towards closing the yield gap through a sustainable increase in agricultural productivity. Over the past years, the annual increase in yields has declined, causing concern. This is often attributed to low investment in agriculture over the past decades, not least in knowledge and infrastructure – and an often low political priority.
Currently there is considerably increased attention to agriculture worldwide, and responses such as global cooperation and public-private partnerships are being developed. Yara continues to drive dialogues on food security and, not least, how agriculture is interlinked with climate change, seeing that there is a growing awareness of how these two dimensions are connected.
One case in point is the attention given to African agriculture: Here, yields remain at low levels compared to other regions, and the number of hungry and malnourished is rising. At the same time it is predicted that large parts of the continent will be hit by climate change.
Africa has lagged behind in the development of agricultural practices, and soils often suffer from severe nutrient depletion. Over the past decade there has been a resounding response to the call for an African Green Revolution. Global efforts have been launched to support sustainable agricultural development, which is now widely recognized as an engine for growth.
Yara is engaged in the food challenge at several levels. We take a leading position in sustainable agriculture by leveraging our agronomic knowledge and global position, offering tools and solutions to improve yields, address the agricultural carbon footprint and increase resource efficiency.
Yara initiates value chain partnerships and joins innovative projects – sharing expertise to improve agricultural productivity. Our main global impact is on food production.
We provide the world’s growers a number of solutions, notably our Crop Nutrition Concept supported by our Precision Farming Tools. Both aim at optimizing resource efficiency and farm profitability – essential elements of sustainable agriculture. Mineral fertilizers are an essential part of the solution, with nitrate-based fertilizers the most effective. Yara’s solutions offer ways to improve productivity by optimizing fertilizer application, often resulting in reduced quantities – and a lower carbon footprint.
We also impact through our global engagement, in stakeholder dialogues addressing the issues of food, environment, resources and rural poverty. We engage within the fertilizer and farming domain, as well as in the international arena, influencing the global agenda.
We employ our core business in the quest for food security, impacting through:
● Products and solutions contributing to sustainable improved agricultural productivity.
● Knowledge of production methods and crop nutrition application, maximizing resource efficiency.
● Initiatives connecting key stakeholders and creating partnerships promoting sustainable agriculture.
● Engagement linking the global issues of food security and climate change, with agriculture as part of the solution.