Do Limited Phosphate Supplies Pose Global Food Security Threat?

GreenTracker| Britain’s Soil Association is proposing that human sewage be spread on farmland. The report ‘Peak phosphorus and the threat to our food security’ argues that limited supplies of phosphate rock-based fertiliser calls for a ‘radical rethink’ of agriculture policy.

Currently, intensive agriculture is ‘totally dependent’ on phosphate for cultivating soil.

Worldwide 158 million tonnes of phosphate rock is mined every year, but recent analysis suggests that we may hit ‘peak’ phosphate as early as 2033, after which supplies will become ‘increasingly scarce and more expensive’, the report claims.

From a global security standpoint, 67 percent of phosphate is mined in just three countries: China (35%), the US (17%) and Morocco and Western Sahara (15%). The price of phosphate rock has doubled since 2006, with the US no longer exporting phosphate and China restricting exports.

The report advises that both organic farming and eating less meat help conserve limited supplies of phosphate. via Farmer’s Guardian

See also: Ireland is better equipped than most to deal with the impending food crisis Independent