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Indian Economy

Shortage of Di-Ammonium Phosphate

  • 21 Oct 2021
  • 3 min read

Why in News

Farmers from several states including Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana and Karnataka are facing a severe shortage of fertilizers mainly of Di-ammonium Phosphate (DAP) ahead of the Rabi season.

Key Points

  • About DAP:
    • DAP is the second most commonly used fertiliser in India after urea.
    • Farmers normally apply this fertiliser just before or at the beginning of sowing, as it is high in phosphorus (P) that stimulates root development.
    • DAP (46% P, 18% Nitrogen) is the preferred source of Phosphorus for farmers.
      • This is similar to urea, which is their preferred nitrogenous fertiliser containing 46% N.
  • Cause of Shortage:
    • Disruption in the Global Supply:
      • Because of disruption in the global supply and logistic chain caused by the pandemic. This has also led to a rise in fertiliser prices globally.
      • The increase in global prices has resulted in India lowering its imports, leading to further depletion of fertiliser stocks in the country.
    • Increased Prices of Raw Materials:
      • Given spiraling global prices — of fertilisers as well as inputs such as phosphoric acid, ammonia and sulphur — imports were viable only if companies could pass these on to farmers here.
    • Fixed Subsidies to Companies:
      • The Centre gives fixed subsidies to the fertilizer companies which feel that it is not sufficient.
      • So, they have scaled down the DAP production that hit the supplies.
  • Implication of Shortage:
    • It can hamper the sowing of rabi crops in states that are largely dependent on soil moisture and water availability in reservoirs.
    • Non-availability of the nutrient inadequate quantity during the sowing season may also impact the production target, which is likely to be missed.

Way Forward

  • The government must ensure that the material is moved quickly from the ports to the consumption centres. Once farmers are assured of enough stock in transit, the panic buying will stop and they may not mind even delaying sowing by a week.
  • Farmers are advised to use a mixture of urea-single super phosphate in-stead of DAP.

Source: TH

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