10 Jul 2008

Growers look for alternatives to expensive fertilisers

7:31 pm on 10 July 2008

Soaring commercial fertiliser prices have prompted an increase in the number of enquiries to the organics industry body from people interested in making the switch to organic production.

Fertiliser companies blame the price increases on the cost of raw materials and transport, which are hitting farmers and growers hard.

Organics Aotearoa New Zealand chief executive Jon Tanner says even farmers who are not making the switch to fully certified organic production are adopting some organic techniques to reduce their dependency on synthetic fertilisers and pesticides.

Mr Tanner says converting to organic production requires an in-depth understanding of the biological processes that take place in the soil, and production is more labour-intensive.