The agricultural micronutrients market was valued at USD 5.4 Billion in 2016, and is projected to reach USD 8.8 Billion by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 8.6% from 2017, in terms of value. In terms of volume, the market is projected to reach 1,681.1 KT by 2022. The high growth of the market can be attributed to the increasing micronutrient deficiency in the soil. On the other hand, manufacturers focus on R&D to produce new formulations and innovative modes of application for micronutrient delivery. Along with this, factors such as increased awareness among growers about the benefits of micronutrients, shrinkage of agricultural land, and effectiveness of micronutrients for crop yield and productivity are driving the market for agricultural micronutrients across the globe.
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Driver: Increasing micronutrient deficiency in soil
Since the last two decades, micronutrient deficiencies in the soil have been increasingly evident, especially the deficiency of zinc and boron. Zinc micronutrient deficiencies are witnessed across the globe; however, they are more common in growing economies such as India, Brazil, and China. Excess application of inorganic fertilizers is one of the major reasons causing soil deficiencies. Originally, soils are deficient in one or more micronutrients; however, increased intake of nutrients by high-yielding crops has caused a heavy shortage of micronutrient elements (iron, manganese, zinc, copper, boron, nickel, and molybdenum). According to the International Fertilizer Association (IFA), currently, almost 50% of the world’s cereal crops are deficient in zinc, which is leading to poor crop yields. Zinc deficiency is the fifth leading risk factor for diseases in developing countries. A decreased uptake of micronutrients due to interaction with other soil components and an increased demand for high-yield crops are the two major reasons for micronutrient deficiency. Intensive usage of fertilizers, chemicals, and farm irrigation is responsible for reducing the level of micronutrients in the soil. Reduction of the supply of micronutrient to crops reduces productivity and damages the quality of crops. To maintain the nutrient level in crops and soil, micronutrient plays an important role, which in turn drives the market growth for agricultural micronutrients
Restraint: Lack of awareness among farmers
A lack of awareness is witnessed regarding the usage and advantages of micronutrients for crops and plants by farmers. Adoption of new agricultural practices by farmers depends on factors such as practical viability, economic sustainability, social acceptability, administrative harmony, political obligation, and eco-friendliness. Farmers who cannot adopt such practices are following traditional agricultural methods, which act as a restraint to the growth of this market.
As many farmers are not aware of the importance of micronutrients, they do not perform a soil test to diagnose micronutrient deficiency levels. The efforts of NGOs and governments are inadequate to educate farmers about the advantages of micronutrients. Very few companies have taken initiatives to educate farmers regarding the benefits of micronutrients. The efforts taken by government bodies around the globe for educating farmers are also limited.
How is the increase in contract farming in various countries presenting growth opportunities for manufacturers in the agricultural micronutrients market?
Major food processing players have adopted the strategy of backward integration to gain raw materials of assured quality, quantity, and price benefits. In contract farming, companies provide the requisite agricultural inputs. Companies carry extension programs to educate farmers. They also perform land preparation in which soil testing is conducted. Farmers are provided with micronutrients to enhance the quality and productivity of output. Integrated nutrition is an important part of contract farming across the world. The major market participants in contract farming are PepsiCo, Punjab Agro Industries Corporation in India, Indu-Farm (EPZ) Limited in Kenya, Coffee Board of Zambia, and Coffee Growers Association in Zambia. The increase in contract farming is expected to further drive the usage of agricultural micronutrients.
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Asia Pacific To Be a Leading Region in the Agricultural Micronutrients Market During the Forecast Period
With the growing population in various countries of the region, the consumption of nutrient-dense food products continues to remain high. Health-conscious consumers prefer spending on fruits and cereals to improve and maintain their health. Due to the high consumption of crops such as cereals and fruits in this region, the demand for agricultural micronutrients is projected to remain high, particularly in New Zealand, India, Australia, and China.
Major players in the agricultural micronutrients market are adopting strategies such as agreements and expansions. Key players identified in this market include Agrium (Canada), Dow Chemical (US), Coromandel International (India), Land O’Lakes (US), Haifa Chemicals (Israel), and Helena Chemicals (US).
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