Fertilizers

Introduction

As with many other products, fertilizers are primarily regulated within an anti-fraud context, not  for sustainable soil management.

Main criticisms:

  • soil chemistry and fertility is based on an outmoded conception of the plant - soil relationship, not agroecology
  • designed to facilitate sale of fertilizer products, not promote ecological soil management
  • excessive focus on macronutrients
  • undervalues fertility from non-chemical sources
  • Does not do much to facilitate improvements in soil health

The legislation does reduce fraud, improve efficacy within a limited interpretation, and reduce pollution from heavy metals.

Jurisdictional issues

The main authority is the federal Fertlizers Act and regulations, in place in some form since the early 1900s.

Fertilizer regulations being updated for micronutrients, innoculants, biostimulants and nitrification inhibitors. Categories, including biostimulants

Because the province's are responsible for land use and environmental protection, they have Nutrient Management legislation, based primarily on products approved by the Fertilizers Act, and the management of manure.  Nutrient Management legislation emerged primarily because of the environmental problems created by excess fertilizer application and poorly timed application and management of manure.

Efficiency

Modifications to the Fertilizers Act
Modifications to provincial Fertilizer and  Nutrient Management legislation
Sustainable protocol adoption

See Goal 5, Sustainable food production

Changes to provincial extension services
Improving ecological nutrient management research

Substitution

Implementing cross compliance like QC
Carbon taxes and other GHG mitigation measures

See Goal 5, Sustainable food production

Reducing corporate concentration in the input sector

See Goal 3, Reducing corporate concentration

Redesign

Ecological nutrient management act