Zinc in Fertilizers – Essential for Crops, Essential for Life!

Zinc deficiency, both in humans and in plants, has been known as a critical issue by nutritionists, medical scientists and agronomists for years. However, it has been receiving increasing attention recently by other groups as well, including economists and social scientists, with the recognition that this is a global nutritional problem with significant health, social, and economic implications.

It is estimated that one third of the world’s population is zinc deficient, resulting in numerous health complications including impairments in immune system and mental functions. It is also estimated that around half of the world’s agricultural soils are deficient in zinc, leading to decreased crop production and nutritional value. Further, the consumption of cereal-based foods which are typically low in zinc, contributes up to 70% of the daily calorie intake in most of the devloping countries, thus resulting in the high prevalence of zinc deficiencies in these populations (Cakmak, 2008).

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