October 12, 2017

Brazilian citrus yields beyond all limits

Imagine that you do a simple tweak in your fertilizer regime, and triple your yield! Well, that’s what happened in Brazil. Meet the agronomist working on the Cambuhy Farm in Brazil and see how they are creating more jobs for the local community, profitably and sustainably.

Brazil is the world’s largest producer and exporter of orange juice. For every five glasses of orange juice consumed globally, three are made in Brazil. This means, regardless of which continent you call home, you have probably been drinking orange juice from Brazil.

As the world population grows, demand is increasing, but the production of citrus cannot expand at the expense of forests. This is where crop nutrition comes into play. So how can we achieve higher yields, on less or equal amount of land. This is what scientists in Brazil, Yara Crop Nutrition agronomists and citrus growers teamed up to find an answer to. The result was astonishing: tripling the yields and increasing crop quality.

Citrus infographic

When researchers got together in Brazil, they started investigating different techniques and crop nutrition applications to raise productivity , yield, and quality for citrus growers. When the fertigation technique was introduced in 2003, things started happening. In addition to using this technique, simply by using a different fertilizer, not previously applied for citrus growers in Brazil, the same amount of fertilizers led to far larger yields of better quality. Compared with the productivity 25-30 years ago , the yields have improved 300%. Today, Brazil is the most productive citrus grower globally.