Vale has invested in fertilizers to supply the Brazilian market and help develop the country’s agriculture. In 2010, it acquired Fosfertil (currently Vale Fertilizantes S/A) and the nutrient assets of Bunge in Brazil (Vale Fosfatados).
The investments in the fertilizer industry are a strategy to lead the global market. Projects have been developed and fertilizer assets portfolios acquired aimed at transforming Vale in one of the world’s main producers in the next seven years.
Agribusiness and NPK
The increase in harvest productivity in Brazil is due, among other factors, to the use of agricultural technology, especially fertilizers. The sector has grown remarkably over the last years, following the strong agribusiness industry development, contributing to the creation of jobs in Brazil.
The fertilizer industry is based on three primary chemicals: nitrogen (N), phosphate (P) and potash (K). In order to prepare the ground for the sowing, farmers need these three chemicals mixed in different concentrations, depending on the crop and region. Farmers are supplied with fertilizers by fertilizer-blending companies, which, in turn, use nitrogen-, phosphate- and potash-containing raw materials in the NPK composition.
In this context, the Brazilian agribusiness industry has grown rapidly, substantially expanding the demand for fertilizers. Since Brazil still imports over 50% of the fertilizer inputs it consumes, our challenge is to increase our production capacity so as to reduce the country’s dependence on these imports.