AIC calls on the industry to jointly achieve nutrient balance

First published: 30 April 2021

The AIC have recently published a call on all involved in the food chain to commit to managing the nutrient cycle on UK farms, to build on past progress and show results by 2030.

By taking a more integrated approach to soil and crop and animal nutrition we can start to build a more sustainable future for food production, meet environmental targets and net zero carbon commitments.

Digging soil (Countryside online)_53743

Click here to down the AIC’s guide to Achieving Farm Nutrient Balance


  • Healthy soils, animals and rural eco-systems
  • Optimal returns on farm investment
  • Optimal productivity for farming systems
  • Lower carbon (methane and nitrous oxide)
  • Lower nitrogen and phosphorus emissions
  • Lower ammonia
  • Increasing biodiversity

These can be achieved by taking a more integrated approach to soil and crop and animal nutrition as the foundation to sustaining future food production, meeting environmental targets and net zero carbon commitments.

The benefits can be measured using these Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

  1. Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE)
  2. Feed Conversation Ratio (FCR)
  3. Farm Nutrient Balance (FNB)

Using these set KPIs farmers and farm advisers to be able to define these, make a benchmark calculation, agree their farm targets, and commit to deliver these improvements by 2030.

Joint ambition

There is a joint ambition across the food chain to achieve nutrient balance across all farm type’s and to successfully deliver it. The key is to put the focus back on the soil, on the crop and on the animal – targeting overall health and condition, correcting nutritional imbalance or deficiency, and employing all technologies and knowledge to deliver recognisable improvements. To support farmers and landowners in achieving this the partnership has established a number of key asks aimed at key industry stakeholders.

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