ICL’s Biodegradable CRF: Efficient Nitrogen Management

A Breakthrough in Sustainable Agriculture by ICL's Research Team Pioneering a Sustainable Future in Fertilization

December 27, 2023
2 mins
Ronald Clemens, CRF Marketing & Portfolio Manager

As a part of ICL Growing Solutions’ commitment to sustainable agriculture, our R&D team, has developed a groundbreaking Controlled-Release Fertilizer (CRF) with a fully biodegradable coating, named eqo.x®. An independent study from the Nutrient Management Institute (The Netherlands), showcases the substantial environmental benefits of this innovative product.

A pot experiment with red beetroot was set up to assess the reduction of n losses to the environment when using ICL’s eqo.x CRF (i.e., coated urea by ICL’s biodegradable release technology) compared to uncoated urea.

Reducing Environmental Impact with Advanced CRF Technology

Our findings reveal that the use of CRFs can significantly reduce nitrogen loss to the environment. In comparison to traditional urea fertilizer, our CRF reduced total nitrogen leached by an impressive 58%, decreased NH3
volatilization up to 60% and lowered N2O emissions by more than 10%. This is a major step forward in mitigating the environmental impact of N fertilization, by reducing contamination of groundwaters due to N leaching and by mitigating climate change  due to reduction of greenhouse N gases.

The exclusive eqo.x biodegradable coating technology takes the CRFs to a new level of sustainability and applicability on the farm, as the coating shell of the CRF breaks down naturally, leaving no pollutants in the soil.

Enhanced Efficiency and Crop Yield

The study also highlights that our CRF not only benefits the environment but also enhances crop yield and nitrogen use efficiency. With an over 30% increase in yield and more than 80% improvement in nitrogen use efficiency compared to conventional urea treatments, this product marks a new era in efficient and responsible farming.