Fertilizer is the main input for augmenting food production and achieving food security. However, its usage is highly skewed in India and moreover there is imbalanced usage with Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P) and Potassium (K) being used extensively as compared to other nutrients. Deficiency of multiple micronutrients is widespread with Zinc and Boron constituting the major share in micronutrient deficiency in Indian soils. From N, P and K, the focus is shifting in promoting secondary and micronutrient fortified/customised fertilizers. Inadequate availability of fertilizers, lower efficiency, declining crop response ratio, declining yields, lack of nutrient management, etc, is driving the need for fortified fertilizers.
There is an immediate need to develop customized and value added fertilizers especially micronutrient fortified fertilizers.
Fortified fertilizers are a combination of multi-nutrient carriers which satisfies the crop's nutritional demand based on area, soil and growth stage of a plant. A fortified fertilizer strengthens the nutrient supply to the plant and provides site specific nutrient management for achieving maximum fertilizer use efficiency for the applied nutrient in a cost effective manner. The primary focus is to get higher yields with lesser fertilizer usage (as nutrients do not have to be applied independently) thereby improving efficiency and increasing profitability for the farmers.