Examine the distribution and factors responsible for the location of Chemical Fertilizer industry around the world.
Chemical fertilisers are one of the most important inputs in modern agriculture. Consumption of fertilisers has registered a steady increase during the latter half of the twentieth century.
- The fertiliser industry has developed in several countries.
- The large consumers of fertilisers are generally also the large producers.
- Ranks of the leading producers of chemical fertilisers vary according to the type of fertilizer.
- Nitrogen fertiliser is the most widely used among all chemical fertilisers. China, US and India are the leading producers of nitrogenous fertilisers.
- Other important producers besides these major producers of nitrogenous fertilisers are the countries of western and central Europe and the oil producing countries of Middle East like Kuwait.
- The share of developing countries in the total production of nitrogen fertilisers has increased rapidly during the last two decades.
- The phosphate fertiliser is produced largely using the phosphate rock as the raw material. Therefore the production of this fertiliser takes place in the countries having large reserves of phosphate rock. Several countries import phosphate rock to produce this type of fertilisers to meet the domestic needs. The US, leading producer of rock phosphate in the world, exports about two-thirds of its total production phosphate. China and India are the most important buyers of phosphate rock from US. The leading producers of phosphate fertiliser include US, Africa and China. The countries of the Middle East and Russia are also important producers.
- US, the leading producer of phosphate fertiliser and the second largest producer of nitrogen fertilisers, does not have enough reserves of potash ore.
- The world’s largest reserves of potash are found in Canada just to north of the US-Canadian border.
- Canada, Russia and Belarus are the leading producers of potash.
Canada alone accounts for more than one-third of the total global production. Besides these countries, Western European countries like France and Germany, and Israel and Jordan are also important producers of potash.