More food from fertile grounds : integrating approaches to improve soil fertility
In this report (PDF) by Alterra Wageningen UR, a new approach to maintain and improve the productive capacity of soil is highlighted. It aims to provide a balanced insight in the current state of affairs of (decreasing) soil fertility levels in relation to food security. The report provides the motivation to develop new pathways of change. To do so, the report starts with an introduction in soil fertility (Chapter 2) and Overview of actors. The diagnosis of the situation in Chapter 3. This chapter addresses the content of the problem, including its spatial appearance and the people who are affected. Chapter 4 reviews the current trends that affect soil fertility management in order to identify options for intervention. In chapter 5 different spatial scales and options for linking scales are assessed. Chapter 6 gives an overview of actors that affect or are affected by changes in soil fertility. Chapter 7 elaborates the relation between food security and soil fertility and Chapter 8 reviews different intervention strategies to identify conditions for success. In Chapter 9 a new approach to improve soil fertility is presented based on the prior results. The conclusions and recommendations are found in Chapter 10. The findings presented in this report are based on literature research and interviews with respondents who are listed in Annex 1. Based on the conclusions the Fertile Grounds Initiative (FGI) was designed to close the nutrient cycle and restore nutrient balances at various spatial levels to maintain or improve the productive quality (soil health) of the land in the long run. It is a coordinated strategy of collaboration between actors in nutrient management (e.g. farmer, fertiliser industry) and other stakeholders (e.g. legislation) to begin with within a country. A booklet can be found here.