An unfolding food crisis: a perspective from the fertiliser industry

Alzbeta Klein, CEO/Director General, International Fertilizer Association

April 21, 2022

One hundred years ago, the world was in a global food shortage. The discovery in the early 1900s of an efficient process for making ammonia out of hydrogen and the nitrogen that is in the air led to the production of nitrogen-based fertilisers. This innovation vastly expanded the availability of food such that today mineral fertilisers are responsible for half of the food we eat. But now conflict in Europe is interrupting the availability of agricultural commodities including fertilisers, weakening a global food system already stressed by the effects of climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic, and prompting calls for action to mitigate a growing food crisis, especially in emerging markets.