After the introduction of chemical fertilizers in the last century, farmers were happy of getting increased yield in agriculture in the beginning. But slowly chemical fertilizers started displaying their ill-effects such as leaching out, and polluting water basins, destroying micro-organisms and friendly insects, making the crop more susceptible to the attack of diseases, reducing the soil fertility and thus causing irreparable damage to the overall system.
What is biofertilizer?
The name itself is self explanatory. The fertilizers are used to improve the fertility of the land using biological wastes, hence the term biofertilizers, and biological wastes do not contain any chemicals which are detrimental to the living soil. They are extremely beneficial in enriching the soil with those micro-organisms, which produce organic nutrients for the soil and help combat diseases. The farm produce does not contain traces of hazardous and poisonous materials. Thus those products are accepted across the world as Organic ones. Hence for organic farming the use of biofertilizers is mandatory.
A biofertilizer (also bio-fertilizer) is a substance which contains living microorganisms which, when applied to seeds, plant surfaces, or soil, colonize the rhizosphere or the interior of the plant and promotes growth by increasing the supply or availability of primary nutrients to the host plant. Biofertilizers add nutrients through the natural processes of nitrogen fixation, solubilizing phosphorus, and stimulating plant growth through the synthesis of growth-promoting substances. Biofertilizers can be expected to reduce the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. The microorganisms in biofertilizers restore the soil’s natural nutrient cycleand build soil organic matter.
Through the use of biofertilizers, healthy plants can be grown, while enhancing the sustainability and the health of the soil. Since they play several roles, a preferred scientific term for such beneficial bacteria is “plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria” (PGPR). Therefore, they are extremely advantageous in enriching soil fertility and fulfilling plant nutrient requirements by supplying the organic nutrients through microorganism and their byproducts. Hence, biofertilizers do not contain any chemicals which are harmful to the living soil.