If you haven’t taken the time to appreciate fertilizer’s role in your life, then today is the day to do that. October 13th is Global Fertilizer Day. Like it sounds, it’s an international day set aside to celebrate the invention of fertilizer and spread the word on the awesome things fertilizers do. Fertilizer has played a vital role in food security, and it will need to continue to do so into the future. Read on for some of the truly amazing facts about how fertilizers affect our lives and make our world a better place.
Global Fertilizer Day: Looking Back
A quote by Microsoft founder and world-wide champion against hunger Bill Gates reads: “Two out of every five people in the world owe their lives to fertilizer.” That’s a super hero-level achievement. The promoters behind Global Fertilizer Day want you to know that half of the food grown in the world today—for people and animals—is only able to be grown through the use of fertilizer.
First and foremost, fertilizers allow more food to be grown on the same amount of land. In the 1960s, the work of one U.S. farmer fed about 25.8 people worldwide. Today, that number is 155 people, and a large portion of that increase is thanks to fertilizers. Poor soils can be amended to grow food and nutrient-rich soils won’t become depleted by continuous use because of fertilizers.
We celebrate Global Fertilizer Day on October 13th because it’s the day that German Chemist Fritz Haber discovered ammonia synthesis in 1908. That discovery led to the large-scale synthesis of fertilizers and the Green Revolution. It’s also a discovery for which he won a Nobel Prize. It is estimated that billions have been saved from famine and millions have been lifted out of poverty because they had enough to eat thanks to fertilizers.
Global Fertilizer Day: Looking to the Future
Fertilizer will be more important than ever in the coming years. As the world’s population continues to grow, more and more arable land is lost to globalization and industrialization.
That means there will be less land to feed more people. According to the Global Fertilizer Day promoters, in 1960 one hectare (a metric land measurement equal to a bit more than two and a half acres) would feed two people. In 2025, that same land will need to feed five people. Fertilizers will continue to help farmers to grow more with less land to feed the world’s population.
Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.