Tamil Nadu Overtakes Karnataka in Bio-Fertilizer Use
As per the latest firm data available on use of bio-fertilizers, Tamil Nadu has overtaken Karnataka. In 2009-10, Tamil Nadu produced 3733 tonnes of bio-fertilizers followed by Karnataka, 3696 tonnes. The other major producers of bio-fertilizers are Kerala (1937 tonnes), Maharashtra (1861 tonnes) and Madhya Pradesh (1588 tonnes).
Studies on benefits and usefulness of bio-fertilizers on agriculture production reveal that on an average 10-20% increase in production can be realised by use of bio-fertilizers. In terms of nutrients, bio-fertilizers can provide 10-20 kg Nitrogen and can solublize 10-12 kg of P2 O5 per hectare per cropping season. Use of bio-fertilizers also improves soil health by helping other beneficial micro-organisms to grow.
Use of bio-fertilizers is being promoted through Integrated Nutrient Management, enhancing awareness and field demonstration.
Financial Support for establishment of bio-fertilizer production units is also provided under the National Project on Organic Farming as back-ended subsidy of 25%, restricted to Rs. 40 lakh, through NABARD.
Bio-fertilizers are products containing living micro-organisms which are agriculturally useful. Most commonly produced and marketed bio-fertilizers are Rhizobium, Azotobacter and Azospirillum and one such bio-fertilizer is phosphate solubilizer, called Phosphate Solubilising Bacteria (PSB).