Surging Need for Higher Crop Yield Fueling Biochar Demand Globally

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Presently, the biochar market is dominated by North America, where the usage of this material is also expected to increase the fastest in the coming years.

Due to the deteriorating soil quality, owing to deforestation, excessive mining, and extensive usage of chemical fertilizers, researchers are suggesting products such as biochar which can mitigate nitrogen leaching in ground water, increase the water absorption ability in soil, boost microbial count in soil, and reduce soil acidity. Additionally, the growing demand for greater agricultural productivity, on account of the surging need for more food products because of the soaring population in several countries, is fueling the requirement for biochar.

Besides the aforementioned factors, the implementation of stringent environmental policies, growing demand for better soil fertility, and increasing enactment of government initiatives aimed at augmenting the crop yield are also pushing up the demand for biochar across the world. Biochar is utilized as a soil amendment and assists in enhancing soil fertility and retaining the quantity of carbon in soil. Although the char extracted from wild fire also helps in enhancing soil fertility, its usage remains limited, owing to the fact that wild fire leads to environmental contamination, deforestation, and greenhouse gas emissions.

Because of the aforementioned factors, biochar is being increasingly used in farming processes, which is, in turn, driving the expansion of the biochar market. The revenue of the market reached $4.27 million in 2015 and the market is predicted to exhibit a CAGR of 17.1% from 2016 to 2023 (forecast period), as per the estimates of the market research company, PS Intelligence. Biochar is produced via pyrolysis and gasification processes that include super heating of biomass in the presence of limited amounts of oxygen at high temperatures and thermal conversion.

Geographically, the demand for biochar was observed to be the highest in North America in 2015. This was because of the high requirement for agricultural products and improvements in crop yield and soil quality in the region. Additionally, the region is witnessing rapid deterioration in soil texture and quality, on account of the excessive usage of chemical fertilizers and deforestation and mining activities. This is subsequently driving the demand for biochar, as it can reduce the acidity of the soil and the amount of nitrogen leaching into ground water.

Thus, owing to the growing demand for higher crop productivity, because of the burgeoning requirement for more food products, and the soaring demand for better soil quality and texture, the usage of biochar is surging sharply in farming processes across the world.