Fertilizers are used to maintain soil fertility and enhance crop yield. In addition to phosphorus and nitrogen, potassium is an important element responsible for plant growth. Lack of potassium lowers resistance of plants against several diseases and draught, bringing down the overall quality of the crops. These factors have led to an increase in the demand for potash fertilizers globally. Furthermore, there are three major grades of potash fertilizers available, which includes potassium chloride, potassium sulfate, and potassium nitrate among others.
Key factors increasing the demand for potash fertilizers include rising demand for increased crop productivity on limited landscape and the growing acceptance of potash fertilizers, owing to its high nutrient content. Potash fertilizers help to improve the flavor and color of fruits, and also has the ability to increase their size. Low chloride content in potassium chloride fertilizers helps in improving the yield by providing disease resistance to crops. Furthermore, the potassium sulfate fertilizers provide both sulfur and potassium in soluble form, and is the most preferred grade of potash fertilizers, where the irrigation water have high chloride content. Wide availability of various grades of potash fertilizers is another major factor that is boosting growth of the market.
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Based on product type, in 2017, potassium chloride segment dominated the market and is also projected to witness fastest growth during the forecast period. This is majorly attributed, owing to its high nutrient content and its wide application in horticultural, plantation, and field crops. Furthermore, low price of potassium chloride fertilizer when compared to sulfate of potash is another factor supporting growth of this segment.
Potash Fertilizers Market Outlook
Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest-growing market, witnessing the highest CAGR during the forecast period. Major factors contributing to the growth of potash fertilizers market include rising awareness among the farmers regarding the efficient usage of their land for better crop yield by using fertilizers, and the steadily growing demand for food grains, owing to the rising population. For instance, according to the United Nations ESCAP (Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific), in 2014, the population of Asia Pacific was recorded as 4.3 Billion, which accounted for more than 60% of the world’s total population. Moreover, the growing demand for potash fertilizers in economies such as China, India, and Indonesia is another factor pushing the growth of this market in Asia Pacific.
In Latin America, economies such as Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, and Colombia are the largest consumers of fertilizers. According to the United Nations ESCAP, the annual growth for potash fertilizer in this region is anticipated to be around 3% during 2014-2018. Furthermore, Brazil is one of the major contributors to the growth of the market, owing to the high imports of potash fertilizers, as soil in the country has low potassium content and requires added potash to enhance and maintain its productivity. According to the Brazilian National Fertilizer Association (ANDA), the potash imports in Brazil was recorded as 1.38 Million Tons in the first quarter of 2016, with an increase of 2.4% as compared to 2015.
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Major players operating in the potash fertilizers market include Israel Chemicals Ltd., Agrium Inc., EuroChem Group A.G., Uralkali PJSC, The Mosaic Company, Yara International A.S.A., Migao Corporation Chemicals, SQM S.A., Sesoda Corporation, Brazil Potash Corporation, and K+S KALI GmbH. In 2015, the Migao Corporation Chemicals had launched a new compound fertilizer facility in Southern China. The compound fertilizer is a combination of potassium sulfate, potassium nitrate, and other crop nutrients.