IPI International Potash Institute
IPI International Potash Institute

Editorial: e-ifc No. 35, September 2013


Dear readers,

With 50 percent more land to farm than India, sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has the potential to be a major player in global food production. Moreover, fertilizer usage in SSA is just 10-30 percent of that typically found in other regions, and crops commonly demonstrate a double or triple increase in productivity when fertilized. Based on these results, and considering the size of the region, it is not surprising that many expect SSA to become a major player in global food security.

In Ethiopia, IPI has recently joined a large-scale project - “Nationally Coordinated Soil Fertility Replenishment Technology Demonstrations” - led by the Ministry of Agriculture. In this project, the benefits of balanced fertilization are demonstrated to farmers in more than 250 locations where teff, maize, wheat, barley, sorghum, millet and oats are the major cereals produced. Results are promising and will be reported in future editions of the e-ifc.

In this edition, we include a report on “The Effect of Potassium on the Yields of Potato and Wheat grown on the Acidic Soils of Chencha and Hagere Selam in Southern Ethiopia”. Potato yields have doubled (even tripled) with application of K, and wheat yields have doubled. Besides the economic value which results from these significant increases, the yields achieved with proper nutrient management are comparable to other production systems in the world. This demonstrates the impact of simply doing things right.

With this in mind, IPI will continue to invest in SSA to bring more value to farmers, to promote efficient use of nutrients, and to assist in improving global food security.

I wish you an enjoyable read.

Hillel Magen

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