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Scientists Test New 'Green' Fertiliser

A new synthetic fertiliser could help farmers to save money, boost food production and reduce planet-warming emissions, scientists have found after trialling it on rice farms in Sri Lanka.

By slowing down the release of nutrients the fertiliser will help farmers to increase crop yields using less chemicals, the scientists from Britain and Sri Lanka said.

Chemical fertilisers such as the nitrogen-rich urea were key to the agricultural boom of the 1960s and 70s known as the "Green Revolution" but their cost remains relatively high for farmers in the developing world.

Agricultural production must rise by about 60 percent to feed a growing global population, expected to reach 9 billion by 2050, according to the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

Josef Stuefer

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