Handbook of Biofertilizers
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PREFACE Biofertilizers refer to preparations containing primarily L. active strains of microorganisms bacteria, fuhglfyfeast, algae, etc. in sufficient number capable of fixing either atmospheric nitrogen or solubilizicfgWmahilizing phosphorus which is otherwise not availabl dnrjgccessible to growing plants. Despite spectacular progress in the production and use ol fertilizers the w o r l d m e e t increasing demand, the in d u s try fia s 3 o a s i T y e e a r the escalating costs of raw stage, when accelqf lea agricultural development required further thrust, in many parts of the world it is becoming difficult to meet the nutrient, needs of farming through chemical fertilizers alone. This has in turn paved the way for Integrated Plan Nutrition involving judicious and integrated use of chemical synthetic sources of nutrients along with biofertilizers and nutrients through crop residue recycling, organic manures, reen m anuring and wastes, etc. Only brofertilizers are Based on renewable energy sources besides being cheaper and environment friendly, among all the non-mineral sources of nutrients. Biofertilizers can play a , very significant role in improving soil fertility by fixing atmospheric nitrogen besides solublising accessing phosphate not available inaccessible to plants. They also produce growth substances in the rhizosphere. In fact even today biologically fixed nitrogen on, the earth fa r exceeds the industrially fixed nitrogen.
The modern dayontensive crop cultivation requires the use of chemical fertilizer but fertilizers are not only in short supply but also expensive in developing countries. Therefore, the current trend is to explore the possibility of supplementing chemical fertilizers with organic ones, more particularly biofertilizers of microbial origin. Microbial processes are not only quick but consume relatively less energy than industrial processes. Secondly, they have the advantages of being diversified into small units to meet the demands of specific problems of location which one is apt to come across in the
Handbook o f Biofertilizers
agricultural practices of nations which have not taken to mechanization of farming. In view of the immense potential of biofertilizers as a nutrient source this book on Handbook of Biofertilizers has been written to provide latest Know-how on the production technology, preservation, multiplication, storage,