NEW DELHI: The government move to reduce the Urea bags to 45 kg instead of 50 kg may bring down consumption of the soil nutrient by 10%, the fertilizer ministry told Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
It also said the 100% neem quoting of urea has reduced the consumption during 2016-17 as compared to the previous year.
In a written reply, minister of state for chemicals and fertilizers Rao Inderjit Singh said, “Farmers mostly assess the requirement of urea in terms of bags for agriculture purpose, it is estimated that the availability of urea in 45 kg bags instead of 50 kg bag may bring down consumption of urea by 10%.”
TOI on June 4 had first reported the government move, which is targeted to help save Rs 6,000-7,000 crore subsidy annually.
The minister said the urea consumption reduced to 296.14 lakh tonnes in 2016-17 against 306.35 lakh tonnes during 2015-16.
Listing the innovative solutions taken by the government to cut urea consumption Rao said his department has made it mandatory for all the domestic producers of urea to produce 100% as Neem Coated Urea (NCU). He added that entire quantity of both indigenously produced urea and imported urea is being neem coated since December 2015.
One of the primary benefits of neem coating is the slow release of urea, which results in increased Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE). Due to NUE, the consumption of Neem Coated Urea reduces as compared to normal urea, the Minister added.
Source : timesofindia