Feeding the world’s growing population

New Zealand’s reputation as a quality food producer is growing.

Optimising food production

Over the next 50 years farmers around the world will need to produce more food than has been grown over the past 10,000 years.

Best use from a limited resource

Fertiliser helps farmers produce food efficiently by replenishing the soil. But fertiliser needs to be used responsibly.

Responsible and sustainable nutrient management

The Fertiliser Association invests in research and tools to ensure farm profitability while minimising nutrient losses to the environment.

The Fertiliser Association of New Zealand promotes and encourages responsible and scientifically-based nutrient management.

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Fact Sheets

The Value of Phosphorus Fertiliser

The Fertiliser Association of New Zealand commissioned a study to analyse the value of phosphorus fertiliser to the primary sector, both at the farm gate and to the wider New Zealand economy.

The study assesses the economic impact of the decline in soil fertility if phosphorus fertiliser was not available. We have presented the findings in a downloadable infographic.


The Value of Nitrogen Fertiliser

In 2019, the Fertiliser Association of New Zealand commissioned a study to analyse the costs to the primary sector both associated with removing nitrogen fertiliser or using a substitute. For pastoral farms, this included use of supplementary feed to replace grass grown with nitrogen fertiliser. The research findings demonstrated that not using nitrogen fertiliser would result in a drop of $19.8 billion gross output to the New Zealand economy and a drop in GDP of $6.7 billion.

The report findings have been summarised in a downloadable infographic. 

Download infographic

What drives fertiliser use in New Zealand?

This factsheet provides a snapshot of the factors that drive fertiliser use in Aotearoa New Zealand.


How fertiliser helps to create productive soil

Our soils are the foundation of our food system. Healthy soils produce healthy crops that in turn nourish people and animals. Well managed and productive soils are directly linked to food quality and quantity. Soils supply the essential nutrients, water, oxygen and root support that our food-producing plants need to grow and flourish. 

But how do we ensure that our soil is in the best condition possible to enable our food system to prosper? And what role does fertiliser play in achieving this?


Uranium – in soil, plants and fertiliser

Uranium at trace levels in soil and plants is a natural occurrence. While the levels of uranium in soils are very gradually increasing due to phosphate fertiliser application, this represents no threat to human health or the environment.


Phosphorus Use Guidance Note

This Guidance Note clearly explains why we need to manage phosphorus losses and why we need to build on the international principles of the '4 Rs' for good management of nutrients.


Projections indicate nitrogen fertiliser use has decreased

This fact sheet discusses government projections that indicate nitrogen fertiliser use has decreased over the last few years.


Advisory: Winter fertiliser P application

After receiving questions on whether it is appropriate to apply phosphate (P) fertiliser during the winter months, the Fertiliser Association has produced an advisory on good management practice principles.

As well as providing basic guidance, this advisory refers readers to our Code of Practice and nutrient management booklets. We also provide questions to help land managers step through a risk assessment process.


The Fertiliser Association of New Zealand and Dairy NZ funded development of the Nutrient Management Adviser Certification Programme (NMACP). This industry-wide certification aims to ensure that advisers have the learning, experience and capability to give sound nutrient advice.

Find out more

12 June 2024

FANZ places great value on developing New Zealand’s agricultural research capability. One way we do this is through supporting PhD students. Among the students we are currently supporting is Kaitlin Watson, a Lincoln University student whose PhD looks at phosphorus and nitrogen cycling in dryland pastures under conventional and regenerative agriculture management.

27 March 2024

FANZ is dedicated to funding research and developing New Zealand’s agricultural research capability by supporting PhD research such as the work of Massey University student Nicola Wilson who is undertaking research on ‘What Hot Water Extractable Carbon and Nitrogen can tell us about changes in labile soil Carbon and Nitrogen.’

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