Global Agrochemicals Market - 2021-2028
Agrochemicals are the chemicals that are used in agriculture industry to improve crop health. These include fertilizers, pesticides, soil conditioners and some of the liming and acidifying agents to alter the pH of the soil. Fertilizers and pesticides are the most popular among these agrochemicals, as they are used to increase the soil fertility for crop growth and help the farmers keep pests away from the crops. Pesticides are further categorized based on their application into insecticides, herbicides and fungicides, while fertilizers are segmented based on the specific nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorous and sulfur. With the growing demand in food products, rigorous use of agrochemicals is anticipated in the future to achieve higher farm produce. The global agrochemicals market size was worth US$ XX billion in 2020 and is estimated to reach US$ XX billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of XX % during the forecast period (2021-2028).
Increasing demand for food with rising population is the key driver for the growth of agrochemicals market
As the global population is increasing at a pace of 81 million people each year, the demand for food supply is increasing, which is likely to support the growth of agrochemicals market. According to the World cereal equivalent, the food demand is estimated to reach 10,094 million tons in 2030 and 14,886 million tons by 2050, which demands the production to be 10,120 million tons in 2030 and 15,970 million tons by 2050. Thus, to cope up with the rising demand, farmers are adopting the use of agrochemicals rigorously. Moreover, the benefits provided by the fertilizers and pesticides is likely to support the market growth during the forecast period.
Due to the toxic ingredients contained in the chemical's agricultural products, their pollution levels are so high that they cause serious and, most of the time, fatal effects to the environment. These negative effects can be experienced from the production of the product to consumption on the plants. Most biological products occur naturally, which reduces the cost of production, resulting in relatively cheaper prices compared to chemical pesticides, whose manufacturing cost is high. This results in the consumer footing the bill at a relatively costlier price. Records have shown that pests tend to become resistant to conventional pesticides, thus proving that it is not a long-term solution, something that never happens with the use of organic pesticides and fertilizers. Hence, the agrochemical manufacturing companies are constantly adapting to the changing demands by developing novel products and technologies. Bio-based products are one of the focus areas of agrochemical companies. With the increasing awareness of eco-friendly and sustainable products, bio-based agrochemicals are being increasingly developed as potential alternatives for synthetic chemicals in a variety of applications.
Although agrochemicals help in enhancement of crop's health, their overuse can still result in many acute and chronic health issues. For instance, overuse of pesticides can result in acute diseases like ingestion, inhalation problems or skin problems, which can occur within 48 hours of consumption. Thus, government of different countries are taking necessary steps towards reducing the usage of agrochemicals especially pesticides. For instance, the government of India banned the usage of 18 pesticides in 2018, while 66 are still under review.
Fertilizers emerged as the largest segment in agrochemicals market
Fertilizers emerged as the biggest agrochemical's category. These are chemical compounds that aid in the growth of plants. They are used to prevent soil nutrient deficiency. Fertilizers are available both in the organic and inorganic type, which gives farmers the much safer option for their crops. Fertilizers are available in according to nutrients required by the crop such as nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium and few other complex types of fertilizers. Each fertilizer has its own advantage like nitrogen fertilizers, stimulate the rapid growth of plants and promote healthy foliage and fruit growth while phosphorous converts nutrients into usable building blocks which help them grow. Potassium fertilizers on the other hand help in improving the ability of plants to resist diseases and play an important role in increasing crop yields and their overall quality. All these benefits provided by various fertilizers are supporting the market growth of agrochemicals.
The use of agrochemicals is the highest for the cereals and grains segment as soil nutrient deficiencies can cause decreased yield and less bioavailable nutrients in crops such as rice. Various essential mineral supplementation through fertilizers increases rice crop yield and nutrient content in harvested grains. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the production of cereal crops will increase by 60% from 2000 to 2050. Corn (Zea mays L.) is the third-most important cereal crop in the world, after wheat and rice. Every part of the corn crop has economic value; the grain, leaves, stalk, tassel, and cob can all be used to manufacture many food and non-food products. Hence, it is a challenging task to increase corn production by implementing innovative biotechnology techniques. The usage of nitrogenous fertilizers increases soil fertility, resulting in higher crop yield.
Large agricultural activities in China and India led Asia Pacific to the top of agrochemicals market
Being the largest as well as the most populous region in the world, Asia Pacific is one of the key markets for agrochemicals. The region accounted for almost 30% of the land available on Earth and nearly 60% of the human population, according to the World Bank. To meet the food requirement of this huge population, the use of pesticides has increased significantly in the region. China and India are the highest pesticide- consuming countries in the world. The rising population and need for farm produce is contributing to the growth of agrochemicals market in these countries. According to University of Melbourne and Zhejiang researcher Baojing Gu, China remains the world's largest consumer of agrochemicals with consumption exceeding 30% of global fertilizers and pesticides consumption. The large production of cereal crops, like rice and wheat in India, is the major factor supporting market growth. Consumption of pesticides is rising steadily in India. In 2018-2019, 72,515 metric ton of pesticides were used by farmers all over the country. Data reveals that only eight states account for more than 70.0% of the total pesticide consumption in India. With a growing emphasis on the environment and sustainability, various governments in the region are enforcing clean production and environment-friendly agriculture policies, which may lead to a decline in synthetic pesticide usage in the country.
The global agrochemicals market is highly fragmented, with major players, including Bayer CropScience, Adama Agricultural Solutions, Yara International ASA, BASF SE, Corteva Agriscience and Nufarm, and many others. New product launches, mergers and acquisitions, and partnerships are the major strategies adopted by these leading companies in the market. Additionally, these companies are focusing on making an investment in innovations, collaborations, and expansions to increase their market share. For instance, in January 2020, Corteva Agriscience launched the Cerefit fungicide in Canada. Cerefit is a dual mode-of-action fungicide that targets leaf diseases, which ultimately provides farmers increased yield potential. In October 2020, Syngenta Group announced the acquisition of Valagro, a leading biologicals company, by its business unit Syngenta Crop Protection. The investment positions Syngenta Crop Protection as one of the key global companies poised to shape the rapidly growing biologicals market, which is set to nearly double in size over the next five years. In April 2020, Sumitomo Chemical completed the acquisition of four South American subsidiaries of Nufarm. With this acquisition, Sumitomo Chemical can build its sound development and sales network of crop protection products in South America, including Brazil, the world's largest crop protection market. Syngenta became the only agricultural company with access to leading farm management systems after acquiring the Cropio Group in 2019. These platforms include AgriEdge® in the United States (US), Strider® in Brazil, the Modern Agricultural Platform (MAP) in China, and CropioTM in Eastern Europe. BASF BE launched a new herbicide Zidua in 2019, especially for wheat growers, which is claimed to fight efficiently against weeds.
COVID-19 Impact: Pandemic had a positive impact on global agrochemicals market
As the agricultural practices were exempted from all the restrictions, the demand for agrochemicals was not impacted. But during the first half of the pandemic, the sales of the fertilizers slightly declined due to disruptions in trading activities, while the sales of pesticides weren't much impacted. In terms of supply, a short-term shortage of migrant laborers amid distribution bottlenecks created a wide gap between the number of workers required for the production of agrochemicals and the ones available. The production of crops also decreased due to the unavailability of laborers in large-scale plantations. Many fertilizer and pesticide manufacturers were facing issues due to lack of raw material availability, which has led to the reduction of various agrochemical product manufacturing. Post COVID-19, the agricultural activities have normalized, which has helped the companies to deliver products to target locations.