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In the 1992-2005 period, the total amount of consumed mineral fertilizers in Slovenia decreased by 21.3 %. The consumption of nitrogen decreased the most (25.1 %), followed by phosphorus (21.3 %) and potassium (13.3 %). The consumption of mineral fertilizers per hectare of utilised agricultural area decreased by 14.0 %.


Mineral fertilizers are substances in any physical state which contain plant nutrients and are added to the soil or plants to improve the growth, increase the yield, improve the quality of the crops or fertility of the soil, and are acquired in an industrial procedure (Mineral Fertilizers Act, Official Gazette RS, No. 29/2006).
The indicator shows the consumption of mineral fertilizers in Slovenia in the 1992–2005 period. Presented are their total consumption and the consumption of the main plant nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium). We calculated the consumption of mineral fertilizers per hectare of utilised agricultural area and made a comparison with the EU countries.


Charts

Figure KM02-1: Consumption of mineral fertilizers
Sources: 

Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, 2008

Show data
1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
mineral fertilisers t 189922 174055 182191 168780 168029 180599 184729 186370 174180 178166
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
mineral fertilisers t 175724 177589 162680 149504 146593 149587
Figure KM02-2: Consumption of plant nutrients
Sources: 

Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, 2008.

Show data
1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
N t 38938 33376 33944 32235 31296 33999 34801 34380 34159 34765
P2O5 t 15486 17137 18950 17391 16972 17431 18826 19717 18250 16607
K2O t 20426 21735 22256 21018 20903 22489 22945 24402 22227 20911
N % 52 46.2 45.2 45.6 45.2 46 45.4 43.8 45.8 48.1
P2O5 % 20.7 23.7 25.2 24.6 24.5 23.6 24.6 25.1 24.5 23
K2O % 27.3 30.1 29.6 29.8 30.2 30.4 30 31.1 29.8 28.9
N kg/ha 70 60.4 63.1 61.4 60.9 68.8 70.9 69 67.1 68.2
P2O5 kg/ha 27.9 31 35.3 33.1 33.1 35.3 38.3 39.5 35.9 32.6
K2O kg/ha 36.7 39.3 41.4 40 40.7 45.5 46.7 48.9 43.7 41
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
N t 33412 34501 30264 29169 30383 29613
P2O5 t 15698 15311 14640 13431 12787 12745
K2O t 20655 20007 18573 16081 15458 15264
N % 47.9 49.4 47.7 49.7 51.8 51.4
P2O5 % 22.5 21.9 23.1 22.9 21.8 22.1
K2O % 29.6 28.7 29.3 27.4 26.4 26.5
N kg/ha 66.1 67.7 61.7 57.3 62 59.4
P2O5 kg/ha 31.1 30 29.8 26.4 26.1 25.6
K2O kg/ha 40.9 39.3 37.9 31.6 31.5 30.6
Figure KM02-3: Consumption of plant nutrients per hectare of utilised agricultural area in Slovenia and in comparison with the EU countries
Sources: 

Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, 2008; Food and Agriculture Organization, 2008.

Show data
Netherland Luxembourg Germany EU 15 France Slovenia Finland Ireland Austria Estonia
2002 kg/ha 333.2 281.5 152.9 130.7 131.3 138 134.3 125.7 96.1 298.4
2003 kg/ha 303.3 129.6 152.8 121.2 138.1 137 116.7 122.6 121.5 47.1
2004 kg/ha 663.2 161.6 150.4 152 131.6 129.4 130.8 124.2 122 56.9
2005 kg/ha 326 145.7 145.9 118.5 119.6 115.3 132.5 132.8 159.3 43.3
2002-2005 kg/ha 406.4 179.6 150.5 130.6 130.1 129.9 128.6 126.3 124.7 111.4
EU 27 United Kingdom Czech Republik Poland Denmark Italy Malta Bulgaria Hungary Switzerland
2002 kg/ha 115.4 108.7 97 97.7 83.2 101.7 92.9 71.7 96.2 78.7
2003 kg/ha 99.7 102.9 91 86.1 116.3 91.9 79.6 91.9 81.8 99.4
2004 kg/ha 123 105 101.6 116.1 130 94.6 117 97.6 96.5 90.5
2005 kg/ha 99.8 97.9 109.1 97.8 51.7 88.4 86.5 107.4 92.9 74.6
2002-2005 kg/ha 109.5 103.7 99.7 99.4 95.3 94.1 94 92.1 91.8 85.8
Lithuania EU 16-27 Portugal Spain Greece Slovakia Latvia Romania
2002 kg/ha 62.6 95.9 84.1 68.4 50.3 47.5 30.9 22
2003 kg/ha 88.5 72.4 71.1 78.8 52.1 39.2 29.9 24.5
2004 kg/ha 107.4 86 83.9 83.8 57 61 36.9 25.8
2005 kg/ha 80.5 76.1 69.3 63.2 51.9 59.6 13.2 31.8
2002-2005 kg/ha 84.7 82.6 77.1 73.6 52.8 51.8 27.7 26

Goals

The Resolution on National Environmental Action Plan 2005–2012 anticipates a balanced consumption of mineral fertilizers, a gradual increase in the extent of organic production and prevention of soil-burdening from point and non-point sources. The Rules Concerning Good Agricultural Practice in Fertilization define that fertilization should be carried out in a manner which enables the plants to use the nutrients to the full extent and prevents loss to the groundwater and the atmosphere. In accordance with the Nitrates Directive, the goal of the Action programme for protection of waters against nitrate pollution from agricultural sources for the period 2004–2008 is to reduce and prevent further pollution of waters with nitrates from agricultural production. The goals regarding the consumption of mineral fertilizers are of a descriptive nature, while quantitative goals are not determined.


In the 1992–2005 period, the consumption of mineral fertilizers in Slovenia decreased by 21.3 %, and a constant decrease has been observed since 1999. The main reason for the decrease in the consumption is mostly due to the decrease in 2004 and 2005, when the consumption of mineral fertilizers decreased by 15.8 %, while in the 1992-2003 period it had decreased by 6.5 %.

The same period also saw a decrease in the consumption of mineral fertilizers per hectare of agricultural land from 342 kg/ha to 294 kg/ha, or by 14.0 %. Furthermore, the consumption of plant nutrients decreased from 135 kg/ha to 115 kg/ha, or by 14.3 %. Among plant nutrients in the structure of mineral fertilizers, nitrogen prevails with 47 %, followed by potassium (29 %) and phosphorus (24 %). These facts confirm that in Slovenia, mineral fertilizers are used mostly for sidedressing with nitrogen (consumption of KAN and urea nitrogen fertilizers), while fertilization with phosphorus and potassium is combined with the use of livestock manure in the pre-sowing treatment of the soil. In the 1992-2005 period, the consumption of nitrogen decreased the most (25,1 %), followed by phosphorus (21.3 %) and potassium (13.3 %).

A decrease in the consumption of mineral fertilizers per hectare of utilised agricultural area is attributed to the requirements of the Nitrates Directive and the principles of good farming practice in fertilization, to which all agricultural holdings have been committed in the last few years, and even more so since 2004, when Slovenia entered the EU. Both documents focus more on the use of livestock manure and take plant nutrients into consideration when planning fertilization with mineral fertilizers. Agricultural holdings need to have elaborate fertilization plans which also assess the used plant nutrients from livestock manure, thus the consumption of mineral fertilizers has been decreasing accordingly.

In the 1992-2005 period, the consumption of plant nutrients (N, P2O5, K2O) per hectare of utilised agricultural area in Slovenia was larger than in the EU member countries. In the 1992-1999 period, the consumption increased from 135 kg/ha to 157 kg/ha, then started to decrease and dropped to 115 kg/ha in 2005. Similar trends can also be observed in the EU countries (EU-25 and EU 15), where the consumption of plant nutrients per unit of utilised agricultural area started to decrease after 1996.


Data for Slovenia
Data on the quantity of consumed mineral fertilizers are collected by the Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia and published regularly on an annual basis in the Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of Slovenia. They are acquired on the basis of annual reports by companies, societies and cooperatives on the consumed mineral fertilizers and stock, on the basis of annual reports by importers on the import and purchase of mineral fertilizers, and on the basis of data on the domestic production and export. The indicator includes the consumption of mineral fertilizers in market production and production for own needs.

Data for other countries
Data for the consumption of mineral fertilizers in the EU member countries are accessible from the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) databases.


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