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The global agricultural micronutrients market size was valued at USD 4.58 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 4.87 billion in 2023 to USD 7.78 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.92% during the forecast period.
Zinc, boron, iron, molybdenum, chloride, nickel, copper, and manganese are agricultural micronutrients applied to crops to reduce micronutrient deficiency in soil. These micronutrients are either chelated or non-chelated and can be applied to crops such as cereals, pulses & oilseeds, fruits & vegetables, and others through soil, foliar, or fertigation.
China, India, the U.S., Brazil, Russia, France, Mexico, Japan, Germany, and Turkey are said to be the top agricultural-producing countries globally, as per the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Furthermore, the extensive growth in the demand for high-quality agricultural products globally has been a significant factor in the rising demand for efficient fertilizer in the agriculture industry. Thus, in recent years this market has grown significantly.
For instance, as per the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, the imports of agricultural products in India accounted for USD 31.4 billion, which was USD 22.1 billion in 2020. Furthermore, the Indian Agriculture Produce market exported goods worth USD 43.2 billion in 2021, a growth of around 29.34% compared to 2020.
COVID-19 Pandemic Caused Product Demand to Plunge Considering Supply Chain Disruptions
In the first half of 2021, the pandemic caused massive economic and healthcare disruption, resulting in a global lockdown and closing of borders by countries across the globe, which resulted in supply chain disruption. Thus, the government took action toward food security and introduced policies such as credit for farmers to enable fertilizer use. For instance, in March 2020, the Government of India announced its COVID-19 social assistance package designed for immediate relief by direct-benefit transfer and in-kind support to the vulnerable population. This policy also included assistance in procuring agricultural inputs for the upcoming farming season.
Thus, the announcement of relief funds and policies, including government fertilizer subsidies, increased the trade of essential commodities, including fertilizers. For instance, as per the WTO, the global trade of food and agricultural products was projected to exhibit a growth of 3.5% in 2020. This rising demand for agricultural produce and inputs exceeded supply, resulting in rising global inflation.
The inflation has been reflected in the surging commodity prices and sharp increase in transportation costs. The rising demand in the Asia Pacific region and the bottlenecks caused in the supply chain due to the pandemic were also significant factors toward the rising pricing of commodities. As per the International Fertilizer Association, the ratio of fertilizer prices to crop prices has weakened, thus affecting the affordability of mineral nutrients to farmers in 2021 than in 2020.
Rising Focus on Soil Health and Increasing Demand for Home Gardening to Aid Market Growth
Farmers and agricultural producers are increasing their focus on soil health as soil health influences the crop production rate. For instance, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), ecological soil management has the potential to produce 58% more food. As productive soils result in higher yields, agricultural inputs such as soil amendment and micronutrients have seen an increasing demand.
In addition to soil health, home gardening's popularity is increasing worldwide. Home gardeners mainly focus on cultivating horticultural crops due to their nutritious nature. The COVID-19 pandemic has further fueled the number of home gardeners wanting to grow their own food. Therefore, the growing trend of home gardening and the rising focus on soil health would drive the global agricultural micronutrients market growth.
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Increase in Production and Cultivation Areas of High-Value Crops to Support Market Growth
High-value crops such as fruits, vegetables, turf, and ornamentals are significant consumers of micronutrient fertilizers, owing to growing consumer demand for high-quality produce. Furthermore, the production of these high-value crops has recently seen substantial growth due to the rapid growth in the consumption of fruits in regions such as Asia Pacific, South America, Europe, and others, as fruits and vegetables are the major sources of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. Further, to meet this increasing demand, the production of fruits & vegetables is increasing, reaching 2.10 billion tonnes in 2020, as per data provided by FAO.
Micronutrients play a crucial role in the high-quality yield of fruits & vegetables. Thus, the adoption rate of such products among farmers is expected to increase, thus boosting the market growth globally. Culturing turf grasses to improve the aesthetic appeal of sports, landscapes, commercial homes, and other residential facilities has increased significantly in recent years. The area devoted to lawns has increased, and as per data provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, lawn is one of the highest non-irrigated crops in the country, accounting for 1.9% of the total land in the country.
Increasing Need for Soil Nutrient Management and Demand for Customized Micronutrient Solution to Positively Influence the Market Growth
Over the past few decades, the constant use of synthetic fertilizers for crop production has impacted soil fertility. It has caused depletion in soil organic matter, reduced soil fertility, physical degradation of soil, and soil toxification, resulting in low-quality yield and agricultural produce. Nutrient management through the external application of nutrients on soil can help to improve soil health and crop yield. Therefore, several crop nutrient advisors suggest the 4R strategy to farmers to improve micronutrients in the soil. This strategy helps to educate farmers about the need to adopt a balanced application of crop nutrition products, including micronutrients. Therefore, rising concern about managing soil nutrients will promote the adoption of agricultural micronutrients.
There are significant regional differences in the availability of micronutrients. Identification and mapping of micronutrient availability in the region are helpful in the development of tailored micronutrient solutions and support precision agriculture in such regions. For instance, the European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC) has surveyed to assess top soils in Europe and determined the micronutrient content.
Lack of Access to Government Services and High Taxes on Micronutrients to Impact Market Value
In developing countries, lack of access to government schemes and services offered to farmers regarding soil health and nutrient deficiency can impact the adoption of micronutrients in the market. For instance, 700 of the 1,454 testing facilities in India provide micronutrient deficiency detection services. Thus, around 140 million farmers in the country lack access to laboratories and other services.
Several climatic factors, such as temperature and carbon dioxide, rising sea levels, climate disasters, and others, impact crop yield. Such changes in climate factors impact the crop’s micronutrient uptake impacting the nutritional qualities and crop yield.
As per research conducted by the Harvard Chan School, the micronutrient content in several crops declines when exposed to higher levels of CO2. When exposed to high carbon dioxide levels, wheat, corn, rice, and soy lose 10% of zinc, 5% of iron, and 8% of their protein content.
Rising Awareness Regarding Zinc and Iron Deficiency to Fuel the Demand for Micronutrient Fertilizers
Based on type, the market is classified into zinc, boron, iron, molybdenum, and manganese, and others. Zinc segment holds the highest share of the market, owing to the higher rate of zinc deficiencies in soil across the globe. The choice of micronutrients is highly dependent on the crop and soil. Furthermore, with micronutrients readily available in the soil, the quantity required is less than traditional fertilizers.
Iron has a significant demand among growers across the world. Boron is also popular among consumers in the South American region due to the soil condition in this region. Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Bolivia have leached soils often poor in nutrients, acidic, and low in organic matter, which are favorable conditions for boron deficiency.
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Rising Investments in Technological Advancements and the Development of Fertilizer Equipment to Boost Micronutrient Consumption
Based on application mode, the market is segmented into soil, foliar, and fertigation. The soil segment accounts for a dominating market share. The soil application mode enjoys significant popularity in the global market owing to its ease of application and economics. Fertilizers are applied on the surface across an entire field using high-capacity spreaders in the soil application method. Furthermore, rising investments and initiatives in building new and advanced higher-capacity fertilizer spreaders will further boost the market growth. For instance, in January 2019, Kuhn & Rauch shared plans to launch a new facility to test their fertilizer spreaders.
The foliar application mode has the fastest growing CAGR in the forecast period owing to the rising popularity among farmers as it ensures uniform application of nutrients to the crops. The foliar application mode provides supplementary feeding to complete soil fertilization and increase productivity. In addition, foliar application can be applied at specific stages of crop development to boost yield and improve quality.
Higher Availability of Non-Chelated Agricultural Micronutrients to Fuel Market Growth
By form, the market is segmented into chelated and non-chelated. The non-chelated segment holds a higher market share and the chelated segment is expected to witness higher CAGR growth over the forecast period. The higher share of the non-chelated segment is owing to the product's higher availability in the market and a lower price than chelated products. The higher price of chelated agricultural micronutrients is due to its product design, which contains the micronutrient ion of zinc, copper, iron, boron, and others surrounded by a larger molecule called a ligand or chelator. This ligand or chelator can be natural or synthetic chemicals. These compounds, combined with a micronutrient, form a chelated micronutrient.
Owing to the rising demand and increasing awareness among consumers regarding the positive effects of chelated fertilizers on plant growth, the demand for chelated agricultural micronutrients is growing. Thus, companies expand their distribution channel to cater to the growing demand for these micronutrients. For instance, in April 2019, BASF SE Canada announced signing its contract with Quadra Chemicals as the new distributor of its chelated micronutrient products in Canada.
Higher Cultivation Rate of Cereal Crops to Impel Industry Growth
By crop type, the market is segmented into cereals, pulses & oilseeds, fruits & vegetables, and others. Among these, the cereals segment holds the highest market share and the fruits & vegetables segment is expected to exhibit substantial growth during the forecast period. The higher market share of cereal crops is due to the higher yield and a larger agricultural land covered under the cultivation of cereals, including wheat, maize, rice, and other cereal crops. Cereal grains are grown in greater quantities and provide more food energy worldwide than any other crop. Therefore, cereal crops are also called staple crops. For instance, as per FAO, cereal production in 2020-2021 was 2776.8 million metric tons.
Vegetables & fruits segment is gaining significant popularity in the market owing to the rising demand for fruit consumption among individuals. Growing popularity and changing consumer preference toward a healthy diet have brought prevalence toward the rising consumption of fruits & vegetables. This growing demand shall further fuel the market growth.
The market is analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, South America, and the Middle East & Africa.
Asia Pacific Agricultural Micronutrients Market Size, 2022 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific holds the largest agricultural micronutrients market share during the forecast period, given that the region is a major producer of cereals/staple crops owing to countries such as China and India. For instance, as per the FAO, China's agricultural sector produces around one-fourth of global grain production, feeding about one-fifth of the worldwide population. In addition, the arable land of China is just 10% of the world's arable land. Furthermore, these countries are major exporters of high-quality agricultural produce. The size and quantity of food developed to impact the value of export for which micronutrients significantly influence the quality of plant growth, as the deficiency of such elements can impact trade activities. For instance, boron is an important micronutrient that causes the quality of mango to decline. As per data provided by the National Institute of Health, deficiency of micronutrients leads to defects in plant growth and decreased productivity.
Followed by Asia Pacific, the North America market holds a significant share. Owing to the rising awareness of the major micronutrient deficiency in soil, assessment of nutrient deficiency in the U.S. soil started in the early 1980s, and some of the major nutrients which were found deficient in the crops included boron (B), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and others, which is similar to the situation in Canada. The agricultural landscape in the U.S. is vast, and thus, the adoption of micronutrients by farmers significantly varies from one region to another.
The Europe, South America, and the Middle East & Africa regions will show significant growth in the market during the forecast period owing to the rapid growth in crop production, technological advancement, and rising micronutrient deficiency awareness in the region. For instance, a survey published in the National Library of Medicine in Portugal, Spain, Italy, and three other European countries showed that 60% and 28% of soil samples contain lower levels of Fe and Zn, respectively. In addition, new product launches based on technological advancements in these regions fuel market growth. For instance, Verde AgriTech Plc, an agri-tech company, completed a pre-feasibility study of the South America market to understand the demand for micronutrients and launched the multi-nutrient fertilizer K Forte, which contains micronutrients that are highly required in this region.
Key Players Focus on Product Launches to Stay Competitive
The global market is a semi-consolidated market with large players competing with other small-scale manufacturers to expand their market presence. The agricultural micronutrients companies have been launching new products to cater to the growing demand. For instance, in September 2021, Coromandel launched its new NPK product coated with zinc. In addition, companies are focused toward merger and acquisition to further expand their geographical presence. For instance, ICL acquired Fertiláqua, Brazil's leading provider of specialty plant nutrition, for USD 122 million. This acquisition will help the company to expand its market presence and distribution capabilities in the Brazil market, which is one of the fastest-growing agricultural markets globally.
An Infographic Representation of Agricultural Micronutrients Market
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The report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, type of micronutrient fertilizer products, application modes of the product, different product forms, and micronutrient requirements of different crop types. Besides, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the factors above, the report encompasses several factors that contributed to the growth of the market in recent years.
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CAGR of 6.92% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Billion)
By Application Mode
By Crop Type
North America (By Form, Type, Application Mode, and Country)
Europe (By Form, Type, Application Mode, and Country)
Asia Pacific (By Form, Type, Application Mode, and Country)
South America (By Form, Type, Application Mode, and Country)
Middle East & Africa (By Form, Type, Application Mode, and Country)
As per a study by Fortune Business Insights, the market size was USD 4.58 billion in 2022.
The market is likely to grow at a CAGR of 6.92% over the forecast period (2023-2030).
The zinc segment is expected to lead the market due to the rising awareness about zinc deficiency.
Increased production and cultivation area of high-value crops is expected to drive the global market growth.
Some top market players are Nutrien Ltd., Yara International ASA, Israel Chemicals Ltd., Nouryon Chemicals Holding B.V., and Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO).
Asia Pacific dominated the market in terms of product sales in 2022.
The market growth could be hampered by the lack of access to government services and high taxes on micronutrients.
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