The European Union (EU) has embarked on an ambitious journey by adopting the Green Deal. To overcome the challenges of climate change and environmental degradation, “Europe needs a new growth strategy that will transform the Union into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy, where there are no net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050, economic growth is decoupled from resource use, and no person and no place is left behind.”
The farming sector and the agri-food value chain are vital in helping to achieve the EU ambition of becoming the first climate-neutral continent. Farmers are the custodians of the land. As of 2016, EU farms used 39 percent of the total EU land area for agricultural production.
Protecting and improving water quality and reducing pressure on water resources is another Farm to Fork aspiration. EASYFEED is an innovative plug-and-play solution under development by Yara that makes it easier and more cost-effective for farmers to get started with fertigation.
Fertigation is a mix of fertilizer and irrigation that optimizes water and fertilizer use while also reducing carbon emissions. A trial Yara conducted using fertigation to grow potatoes in collaboration with partners within the food chain and irrigation installation sector showed impressive results: A 31 percent reduction in water use and a 36 percent reduction in CO2 equivalent per ton as well as a 20 percent increase in yield and 10.5 percent more profit after drip investment costs.
This shows how Yara can contribute to more efficient water and nutrition use in Europe, which is especially important around the Mediterranean Sea, where the global warming effect is 20 percent faster than the global average, and freshwater reserves could drop by 15 percent in the coming decades.
Example: potatoes. Collaborative trial partners within the food chain and irrigation installation sector.