Rock Phosphate Suppliers

Mosaic is the country’s largest producer of phosphate and nitrogen. It also operates Brazil’s only potash mine. Aguia Resources (ASX:AGR) subsidiary Aguia Fertilizantes is pushing forward with the construction of a new phosphate-mining operation that, according to Reuters, is expected to contribute to Brazil’s goal to ”slash overall fertilizer imports to 45% of total domestic consumption from the current 85% by 2050.”

The country also has the third largest phosphate reserves in the world, with 1.9 billion MT of the commodity. China’s government has placed restrictions on phosphate exports in an effort to drive down domestic prices of the fertilizer with its own supply. China is also the second largest producer of potash.
China’s phosphate production decreased in 2022 to 85 million metric tons (MT), down from 90 million MT in 2021, but it is still first on the list of top phosphate-producing countries by a long shot. The drop in Chinese output is likely a result of the nation’s environmental crackdown on the mining industry, in addition to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.Russia’s phosphate output also dropped by 1 million MT in 2022 from the previous year, coming in at 13 million MT. As per the US Geological Survey, the country has phosphate reserves of 600 million MT. Russia is also the third largest producer of potash. In 2022, US phosphate mining fell by 1 million MT from the previous year. The top phosphate-producing states, Florida and North Carolina, accounted for over 75 percent of domestic output. The other 25 percent of US production came from Idaho and Utah. Interestingly, CRU Group expects phosphate supply out of Russia to grow in 2023 — while Europe may be turning away from Russian sources of the crop additive, shipments to Brazil, India and elsewhere will support Russian exports.Demand for phosphate fertilizers had created a US$63.81 billion market by 2021, and that figure is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 5.7 percent through 2040 to reach US$176 billion. ”The global demand for phosphate is surging owing to the increasing world population resulting in rising food demand,” according to Grand View Research.

Who are the largest phosphate manufacturers?
OCP has access to more than 70% of the world’s phosphate rock reserves. Initially a mining company, OCP diversified in 1965 to become a phosphate processor, making it the world’s largest and leading fertilizer manufacturers.
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Despite producing significantly less phosphate than China in 2022, Morocco has the largest phosphate reserves. With 50 billion MT, the country accounts for over 70 percent of total global phosphate reserves.Saudi Arabia produced 9 million MT of phosphate last year, down by 200,000 MT from 2021’s output level. The country is sitting on 1.4 billion MT of phosphate reserves.

Peru is last on the list of top phosphate-producing countries in 2022, with output 4.2 million MT, on par with the previous year. About 95 percent of US phosphate imports originate from Peru.
Those interested in the phosphate-mining sector will want to keep an eye on phosphate production and mining companies in the space. Below are 2022’s top phosphate countries by production.As the second largest phosphate-producing country, Morocco produced 40 million MT of the fertilizer in 2022. The North African nation’s phosphate output increased slightly last year due to ongoing capacity expansions. Phosphate is mostly found in phosphate rock, a non-detrital sedimentary rock that contains high amounts of phosphate minerals. Phosphate rock can come in different forms such as quartz, calcite, dolomite, apatite, iron oxide minerals and clay minerals. Phosphate demand is rising as the expanding global population boosts the agricultural industry. Find out which top phosphate-producing countries are feeding this demand.Most phosphate rock mined in the US is used for manufacturing phosphoric acid and superphosphoric acid. These types of wet-process phosphate products are used for items such as animal feed supplements. About half of this type of phosphate is exported in the form of merchant-grade phosphoric acid, granular diammonium and monoammonium phosphate fertilizer.

Brazil, another of the top phosphate countries by production, produced 5.5 million MT of phosphate in 2022 compared to 6 million MT in 2021. Brazil has a booming agricultural sector and is one of the world’s largest fertilizer consumers and importers.
European nations were previously Russia’s biggest phosphate customers in the global market, but the country’s war in Ukraine is impacting which countries buy from Russia. The war has also directly influenced phosphate prices.

Phosphates are compounds that usually include phosphorous and oxygen, and can have one or more common elements, such as sodium, calcium, potassium and aluminum.
Vietnam produced 4.5 million MT of phosphate in 2021, and the Southeast Asian nation has 30 million MT of phosphate reserves. The environmental impact of mining has been an ongoing issue in the Vietnamese mining industry, with concerns over coal and bauxite dominating the discussion.In its latest phosphate report, the US Geological Survey states that global production of phosphate slipped in 2022 alongside rising demand for plant crops. This led to phosphate prices reaching record highs in the first half of the year. While prices have backed off from those highs on dampened demand, analysts expect to see growth again later in the year.

Who is the largest producer of phosphate fertilizers?
1. China. China’s phosphate production decreased in 2022 to 85 million metric tons (MT), down from 90 million MT in 2021, but it is still first on the list of top phosphate-producing countries by a long shot.
The Saudi Arabian Mining Company, also known as Ma’aden, operates the largest phosphate-mining facility in the world. The Wa’ad Al Shamal Minerals Industrial City, an integrated phosphate fertilizer production complex, is a US$8 billion joint venture investment between Ma’aden (60 percent), chemical manufacturer SABIC (TADAWUL:2010) (15 percent) and the Mosaic Company (NYSE:MOS) (25 percent), the largest potash and phosphate producer in the US.The company has been working with Fluor (NYSE:FLR) on the Wa’ad Al Shamal facility, with Fluor providing project management consulting to further develop the operation.

Egypt’s phosphate-mining production in 2022 remained unchanged from 2021 output levels. According to the US Geological Survey, Egypt’s phosphate reserves now sit at 2.8 billion MT. More of those reserves may get dug up in the future as the country builds a new phosphate industrial zone in Aswan. It will also expand the port in Safaga. Jordan’s phosphate-mining output remained steady from the previous year, coming in at 10 million MT in 2022. Its phosphate reserves stand at an estimated 1 billion MT. The country’s sole state-owned phosphate producer is Jordan Phosphate Mines Company, which has offtake deals with several Indian firms. Another Jordan-focused producer is Arab Potash Company, a privately owned company in which China’s State Development & Investment Corporation holds a stake. Phosphate is mainly used in the form of fertilizer for crops and animal feed supplements. Only 5 percent of world phosphate production is used in other applications, such as corrosion prevention and detergents. Vivek, you cannot run rock phosphate through your irrigation, it is not water soluble. If you are wanting to feed your plants phosphorus through your irrigation, you can make a “tea” out of a soluble phosphorus source like guano, either bat or seabird. But you do need to allow it to “steep” overnight. Then you will need to strain it. We have a Down To Earth Seabird or Bat Guano and there are instructions on how to make a tea. You can also use a liquid, such as the liquid bone meal or a Phos Fish, which is a liquid. You should not use CalPhos in alkaline soil, because even with the help of compost and microbes the pH will be too high to get the most out of this fertilizer. For high pH soils, try a high-phosphorus guano instead. Before applying CalPhos, it is best to test your soil to determine the correct rate of application. A professional soil test is the ideal way to go, or try a home kit for a ballpark analysis. If your soil results show that you have sufficient phosphorus OR calcium, and only need the other nutrient, you may want to use a different fertilizer to meet your soil’s needs. For phosphorus, try guano, or EB Stone UltraBloom. For calcium, try limestone, dolomite, or oystershell lime.Although both products contain calcium and phosphorus, the nutrients in soft rock phosphate are more readily available for your plants to use. However, just because the nutrients are more readily available does not mean that they will be quickly used up. CalPhos is a slow release fertilizer. It contains 20% phosphates; however it only has 3% phosphorus that is immediately available. The rest of the phosphorus will be released over as many as five years depending on soil conditions, to give your plants a continual source of this macronutrient. Soft rock phosphate, also called CalPhos or colloidal phosphate, is a great source of phosphorus and calcium for your plants. Our CalPhos comes from phosphate rock mined in Florida, which was formed millions of years ago from the mineralized remains of marine creatures. Soft Rock Phosphate should not be confused with Hard Rock Phosphate. Depending on your soil’s chemistry, the plants in your garden, and other factors, one application of soft rock phosphate can last up to 5 years. An annual soil test, done at the same time every year, can help you determine the frequency at which you should reapply soft rock phosphate.

The phosphorus in CalPhos is tightly bound, and requires acidic soil or beneficial microbial activity to be able to be taken up by plant roots. To achieve this more quickly than just letting nature take its course, mix your CalPhos with compost when applying it. The direct contact with acidic compost will help loosen the chemical bonds and allow the plants to make use of the phosphorus. Applying compost, alone or in combination with mycorrhizae or other beneficial microbes, will also continue to help to release the phosphorus over time, by introducing these helpful microorganisms into your soil.
CalPhos also contains 20% calcium, which is an essential mineral for many aspects of plant growth yet is deficient in some soils. Because the phosphorus in CalPhos becomes available slowly, it is not the best choice if you need to fix a nutrient deficiency quickly, or if you’re gardening in containers or hydroponically. If you require a quick-acting source of phosphorus, try high-phosphorus guano, or for a short-term source of both calcium and phosphorus try bone meal.After beneficiation, the separated phosphate ore is treated with sulfuric acid to produce phosphoric acid, which is used in synthetic fertilizer. The process also creates phosphogypsum, a radioactive byproduct that is stored in mountainous stacks that are hundreds of acres wide and hundreds of feet tall. More than 1 billion tons of the radioactive waste are stored in 25 stacks scattered throughout Florida, perched precariously atop the Floridan aquifer — which supplies drinking water for 10 million people. There are 70 such stacks across the nation. These stacks are prone to sinkholes, breaches, and spills, and the industry struggles with how to deal with these risky radioactive mountains and the dire problems they cause.

Synthetic phosphate fertilizer poses a serious threat to our environment. Phosphate rock mining, along with the inorganic fertilizers and animal feed supplements and pesticides for which phosphate is mined, pollute our air, contaminate our water and destroy invaluable wildlife habitat.

Most mining of phosphate rock involves clearing large swaths of vegetation and digging up the soil beneath to reach the phosphate-ore-containing matrix 60 to 80 feet below the surface. This matrix is then transported by pipeline to a nearby plant, where the phosphate ore is forcibly separated from the sand and clay by a process known as “beneficiation.” Beneficiation creates clay-settling “ponds,” further destroying habitat, from which it can take decades to remove water and which can scar the landscape and contaminate surrounding habitat.
More than half of all domestically sourced phosphate is mined in Florida, by an industry with a record of contaminating the environment through radioactive waste leakage and water pollution that threatens Florida’s groundwater resources. Now there are plans to tear up more than 50,000 additional acres of central Florida with harmful strip-mining practices — and no plan to address the radioactive phosphogypsum stacks that have already been created.In 2021 the Center filed another notice of intent to sue the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for its role in the Piney Point phosphogypsum stack disaster, which released more than 200 million gallons of polluted wastewater into Tampa Bay, threatening Florida manatees and sea turtles.In 2020 the Center sued the Environmental Protection Agency for authorizing the use of phosphogypsum in road construction. In 2021 we petitioned the EPA to better regulate phosphogypsum under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and the Toxic Substances Control Act.

In early 2022, Arianne Phosphate launched a research program in collaboration with the Environmental and Biotechnology Research Group of Cegep Riviere-de-Loup with the goal of developing a new breed of fertilizers using organic waste and the company’s phosphate concentrate. In addition to agriculture, Arianne Phosphate is exploring the possibility of supplying high-quality materials to the energy sector, including for use in hydrogen fuel cells and lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) batteries.
Demand for both phosphate and potash fertilizers is anticipated to continue growing as the world’s population increases and the amount of arable land decreases.

Minbos holds a mining license for Cabinda, as well as a commercial site for its phosphate granulation plant in Angola. In early January, Minbos reached an important milestone with the signing of a private investment contract for Cabinda with Angola’s Agency for Private Investment and Promotion of Angolan Exports.Phosphate exploration and development company Mimbos Resources is focused on building a nutrient supply and distribution business targeting the agricultural sector of the Middle Africa region. The company’s Cabinda phosphate fertilizer project is located in Angola. Centrex Metals holds the Ardmore phosphate rock project in Queensland, which it says is one of the world’s few remaining undeveloped high-grade phosphate rock deposits. Through its products, Fertoz promotes sustainable agricultural practices that earn farmers carbon credits to offset emissions. The firm recently expanded its line of low-carbon and carbon-sequestering fertilizers and products.

With those numbers in mind, the Investing News Network has put together an overview of phosphate-focused stocks. They are listed in alphabetical order and had market caps over $10 million as of May 2, 2023.

What is the price of rock phosphate?
World Bank Phosphate Rock Price in Last 12 MonthsIndexLast 12 MonthsPrice Nominal US Dollars($/mt)10August 2022$ 320.0011July 2022$ 320.0012June 2022$ 287.5013May 2022$ 255.00
This phosphate-mining stock has greatly benefited from higher phosphate prices as greater demand for agricultural commodities is driving demand for fertilizers globally.The company’s pipeline of prospective phosphate operations includes the fully permitted Korella phosphate and rare earths mine in Queensland, Australia. In March of this year, Chatham signed a lease for a 22 hectare site to establish the Korella phosphate distribution hub in Cloncurry. The hub will be an essential component of the company’s “pit-to-port logistics solution,” which will address the challenge of transporting phosphate rock from Chatham’s Korella North, Korella Central and Korella South mines to the Port of Townsville.

The phosphate market is expected to witness a compound annual growth rate of 4.1 percent between 2022 and 2031 to reach US$35.6 billion. Driving this growth will be increasing pressure on global food supply brought on by rising populations and climate change, as well as inflation and downstream costs. Phosphate is also increasingly becoming a sought-after battery material for the electric vehicle industry.
Fertoz markets and develops a range of organic fertilizer products in North America and Australia, and has two wholly owned rock phosphate projects in BC, Canada. Fertoz is currently working on mine permits and bulk sample applications at both its Wapiti and Fernie assets for 82,000 MT for extraction in the near term. Ardmore has a JORC-compliant mineral reserve of 10.1 million MT at 30.2 percent phosphorous pentoxide that is contained within an existing mineral resource of 16.2 million MT. So far in the first half of 2023, Centrex has inked a number of important offtake and partnership agreements, including binding offtake deals with Ameropa Australia and Ballance Agri-Nutrients for the purchase of phosphate from Ardmore. It also set up a memorandum of understanding between Agriflex, its wholly owned subsidiary, and Neutrog Australia; together they will develop new organic and biological fertilizer products. Avenira owns the Wonarah phosphate project in Australia’s Northern Territory. The site is considered one of the largest-known phosphate deposits in Australia, with measured resources of 64.9 million MT at 22.4 percent phosphorous pentoxide, indicated resources of 133 million MT at 21.1 percent phosphorous pentoxide and inferred resources of 352 million MT at 21 percent phosphorous pentoxide.

The vertically integrated company has five other phosphate-focused projects at various stages of exploration and development, including the high-grade Farim phosphate mine project located in Guinea-Bissau, and the vertically integrated high-grade Santana phosphate mine and fertilizer plant project in Brazil.

Itafos is a phosphate-based fertilizer and specialty products company with projects in Brazil, Peru, the US and Guinea-Bissau. Its Conda operation produces monoammonium phosphate, superphosphoric acid, merchant-grade phosphoric acid and specialty products, while its Arraias operation produces single superphosphate.Chatham Rock Phosphate is focused on building a 2 million MT per annum international phosphate-mining and trading house targeting low-cadmium, organic phosphate. Chatham intends to be a major supplier of direct-application phosphate to the New Zealand and global agricultural sectors.Nutrien, Canada’s largest potash company, is the product of the 2016 merger between phosphate-mining giants Agrium and Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan. The company is one of the world’s largest providers of crop fertilizers and services, with an agricultural retail network that services more than 500,000 grower accounts. In addition to its expansive portfolio of potash assets, Nutrien operates two large integrated phosphate-mining and processing facilities, and four regional upgrading plants in the US.In 2023’s first quarter, the company received a detailed report confirming that its high-purity phosphate concentrate can be used in the production of LFP batteries.

Thankfully, phosphate-mining production around the globe is expected to increase, with the largest areas of growth being Africa and the Middle East. Project developments in Brazil, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Peru and Russia are all expected to contribute to increased phosphate rock production as well. In fact, global phosphate mine capacity is expected to increase from 243 million metric tons (MT) in 2020 to 264.7 million MT in 2025.
Arianne Phosphate is moving forward at its development-stage Lac a Paul phosphate project in Quebec. The company has secured initial offtake and marketing deals, and the project is fully permitted and construction-ready; it is expected to create 1,000 jobs during operation and to contribute C$12 billion to the region’s economy.Mosaic is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients. It has various phosphate operations in Florida, Louisiana and South America.Avenira’s Wonarah project has the potential to supply high-grade phosphorous to the agriculture sector. Offtake negotiations are progressing with regional fertilizer producers. Avenira is another phosphate company looking to supply the material to the LFP battery market in addition to the fertilizer industry. In early March, the company released a scoping study for an LFP cathode manufacturing project.

The mining of phosphorite, (also known as phosphate rock or rock phosphate) was OCP’s earliest operation, with the sale of these products being the company’s main business. The company extracted 34.4 million tonnes in 2018, 11.3 million tons of which were exported, with Khouribga accounting for the biggest share. OCP market share in this product category is 38%.
To help develop the value chain at this site OCP is investing $2.2 billion to build a phosphate processing plant, producing fertilizer and phosphoric acid. The scheme is expected to create more than 5,000 job in the region.

OCP also produces animal feeds from phosphate. The product is called PHOSFEED and is made from phosphoric acid and calcium carbonate. PHOSFEED is GMP+, HACCP and ISO 22000 certified.
In 2016, the site produced 1.5Mt of phosphoric acid and 832.6Kt of TSP fertilizer. These figures represented the highest production figures in the site’s history. The site produces fertilizer for both the domestic and international markets. OCP India undertakes market and soil research in order to drive sales of OCP products in the country. The company carries out administration, sales support and marketing for OCP’s Indian customers. The company is constructing a fertilizer plant with Krishak Bharati Limited (Kribhco) that will have a capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per year – the combined investment is worth US$230 million. The unit will use phosphate transported from OCP facilities in Morocco, the company will also be responsible for the shipping of the products. OCP’s largest South American operations are located in Brazil. The company’s Brazilian operations are made up of two companies, OCP di Brasil and OCP Fertilizantes, both headquartered in São Paulo. The companies undertake competitor and market research as well as working with farmers to establish the best fertilizers for their needs. The company also helps market, sell, and distribute OCP products in the country. OCP sales in the country increased by 20% in Q1 2019.OCP has access to more than 70% of the world’s phosphate rock reserves. Initially a mining company, OCP diversified in 1965 to become a phosphate processor, making it the world’s largest and leading fertilizer manufacturers. The company holds a 31% market share of the world phosphate product market.

OCP also has a number of sites producing fertilizer. Fertilizer sales, including fortified fertilizers now account for slightly over half of OCP’s total revenue and 23% of its world market share (2018 production: 8.8MT). The phosphate-based conventional fertilizers produced by OCP include; Mono-Ammonium Phosphate (MAP) a concentrated phosphate fertilizer, made with phosphorus and nitrogen. Di-Ammonium Phosphate (DAP) is a concentrated phosphate fertilizer, that can also be used as a fire retardant. Triple Super Phosphate (TSP) is a concentrated phosphate fertilizer made with just phosphate. These can be used directly for soil fertilization or as raw material for blends, or other products.
In 1976, OCP acquired 65% of Phosboucraa mine (Boucraâ-Laayoune), in Western Sahara and became the sole owner in 2002. Because Western Sahara is a non-self governing territory, the legality of mining by a foreign state actor is contentious under international law. As a result, several funds have disinvested from buyers of phosphates mined by Phosboucraa, and exports have dropped.In February 2016, the OCP Group created a new subsidiary named OCP Africa, which is responsible for leading the development of the group in the African fertilizer market through a network of subsidiaries in 12 African countries.

Since 1998, OCP has also operated the Bouchane mine, which is situated 40 km from Youssoufia. The phosphate from this mine is also processed at Youssoufia.
Gantour is made up of two mining facilities, Benguerir and Youssoufia and holds the second largest amount of Morocco’s phosphate reserves, 37% of the total.Prayon Technologies is a joint venture between OCP Group and the Wallonia Regional Investment Company. The original company was founded in 1882, in Belgium as the Société Anonyme Métallurgique de Prayon, a Zinc producer. In 1996, OCP bought half of the shares. The company specializes in chemical R&D, finding and developing compounds and developing their use cases. The company, through OCP’s expertise is recognized as a leader in phosphate creativity.

The OCP Group (OCP S.A.) (formerly Office Chérifien des Phosphates) is a state-owned phosphate rock miner, phosphoric acid manufacturer and fertilizer producer. Founded in 1920, the company has grown to become the world’s largest producer of phosphate and phosphate-based products and it is one of the largest phosphate, fertilizer, Chemicals and Mineral industrial companies in the world by revenue.
The OCP Group plays an important economic and social role in Morocco. The value of phosphates and their derivatives represented nearly a quarter of the country’s exports and approximately 3.5% of the GDP in 2010.

What is the disadvantage of r
ock phosphate?
Synthetic phosphate fertilizer poses a serious threat to our environment. Phosphate rock mining, along with the inorganic fertilizers and animal feed supplements and pesticides for which phosphate is mined, pollute our air, contaminate our water and destroy invaluable wildlife habitat.
After approval from the AMMC ((Moroccan Authority of the Capital Market) Autorité Marocaine du Marché des Capitaux) on December 9, 2016, the OCP Group managed to reach 10.2 billion dirhams of bonds from the national community. This loan is the largest ever made in the Moroccan market.While the majority of OCP’s operations are based in Morocco due to its large Phosphate reserves, the company has expanded globally, in processing, sales, and distribution. The company has more than 160 customers on 5 continents. The companies also support the communities they operate in by analyzing soil to tailor fertilizer to specific needs.

100% of profits made in the region are reinvested in the local community through the Phosboucraa Foundation. The Phosboucraa Foundation has so far helped more the 50,000 people through its various programs in education, health, and entrepreneurship.
OCP has a research, sales and marketing function in Asia Pacific based in Singapore and Beijing. The construction of a fertilizer processing plant is underway in Singapore to allow easier mass customization of products for local markets.

OCP’s first mine opened in Khouribga in 1921. The Khouribga area has the richest phosphate deposits in the world. In 2014, a slurry pipeline between Khouribga and Jorf Lasfar was launched, which transports phosphate from the mines to the processing facility safely and efficiently. The pipeline, one world’s longest gravity powered pipelines saves more than 3 Mm of water per year, as well as a significant amount of energy. The site employs more people than any other OCP mine, which is more than 6,100 people. In 2016, the mine produced 18.9MT of Phosphate Rock, or 70% of the total group output.In 1994, the OCP Group started a new mining project in Sidi Chennane in the Khouribga area. The construction of the purified phosphoric acid plant was launched in Jorf Lasfar in 1996 and started production in 1998. Operations at the mine originally began in 1972; its activities include mining, processing and marketing phosphate rock. Boucraa mine represents approximately 2% of the Morocco’s total phosphate reserves, 4.6% of OCP Group’s total revenue and around 8% of the total rock extracted. Phosphoric acid is made from phosphate and due to its non-toxic nature, is widely used in the food, cosmetic, and dental industry. It is an example of diversification and supply chain integration to drive value. OCP produced 6.1 million metric tonnes in 2018, giving it a market share of 49%. In February 2016, a fertilizer production plant dedicated entirely to Africa was inaugurated at Jorf Lasfar, the African Fertilizer Complex. Connected to the slurry pipeline, JFC 4 will be fully integrated and have its own thermoelectric plant. These plants not only make Jorf Lasfar completely energy self-sufficient, they also create an energy surplus that fuels the complex’s sea water desalination station. In 2008, the OCP Group became a limited company. Currently 95% of the OCP Group is owned by the Moroccan state and 5% by Banque Centrale Populaire investment funds.The Jorf Lasfar processing platform is the largest fertilizer complex in the world. The first phase of the site opened in 1984 and has been expanded multiple times since. Products are made using phosphate rock mined in Khouribga. The site produced 4.63Mt of fertilizer in 2016, including, 1.86Mt Phosphoric acid, 1.91Mt MAP, and 1.14Mt DAP. Over 30 different types of fertilizer were produced to suit various soil types. The complex is made up of several units including the newest, the Africa fertilizer complex and JFC II. The site is the world’s largest exporter of fertilizer. The site has a desalination plant with a capacity of 25 Mm per year – since its construction this has significantly reduced the amount of water consumed by the plant from local sources.

Which rock phosphate is best?
Soft rock phosphate, also called CalPhos or colloidal phosphate, is a great source of phosphorus and calcium for your plants.
In 2010, OCP Group entered in to a joint venture with Jacobs Engineering Group Inc., one of the world’s largest providers of technical, professional, and construction services. The new company was named Jacobs Engineering SA (JESA).

Phosboucraa says that the project will continue a policy of hiring local workers, which they say make up 76% of the workforce, up from just 4% in 1976, achieved through outreach and training programs, and which have also led to hundreds of workers being trained to do skilled work at the groups site in the North. The numbers published by Phosboucraa, however, are disputed by local activists, including Western Sahara Research Watch, which notes that the designation of ”local workers” doesn’t distinguish between settlers and indigenous people.
In 2014, the OCP Group inaugurated the slurry pipeline linking Khouribga to Jorf Lasfar, a technological advancement in the transportation of phosphates.

The Group’s activities are organised into an integrated model covering all operations of the value chain from the extraction of phosphates to the production and marketing of various products including fertilizers and phosphoric acid.
The OCP Group was founded in Morocco in 1920 as the Office Chérifien des Phosphates following Royal Decree. Mining production began in 1921, when it began extracting phosphate rock at its first mine in Khouribga. Transportation of the phosphate to the port of Casablanca also started in 1921, allowing the first export of phosphate that year. Subsequently, OCP launched other mining sites in Youssoufia in 1931 and in Benguerir in 1976, and launched chemical production in Safi in 1965, and in Jorf Lasfar in 1984.Soluble Fertilizers are used for high value crops specifically for irrigated systems. They ensure efficient use of fertilizers, thus considerably enhance agricultural productivity and reduce water consumption. These fertilizers are well-suited to new micro-irrigation and sprinkler systems. The group’s total fertilizer production is 8.8 million metric tonnes (including conventional fertilizers).

OCP North America, headquartered in New York, United States and Canada founded in 2019. The company conducts research on the North American market, as well as analyzing soil to better customize fertilizer. In early 2020, it will assume the North American sales and marketing portfolio of OCP, building on the research undertaken.
OCP Group also produces a number of fortified fertilizers that can be tailored to meet the needs of particular types of soil – even down to a field by field scale. A number of different formulations are produced. NP+ are nitrogen and phosphate-based complex fertilizers, enriched with secondary and micro nutrients. NPK+ is similar in structure to the former, but uses a different chemical process, and contains potash. OCP products can also be tailored to meet crop specific nutrient requirements, for example, for corn, cotton, or cocoa.The mine in Youssoufia is the second most important mine to the Moroccan economy after the Khouribga mine. It is also the third biggest producer worldwide of phosphate.Founded as a wholly owned subsidiary of OCP S.A. in 2016, the company acts as a distributor for OCP products as well as operating facilities for fertilizer production. This capacity is being expanded rapidly following a large-scale investment program. OCP Group sees Africa as a major market for growth due to its unexploited potential due to the comparatively low use of fertilizers, which is reflected in lower than average per hectare crop yields. Support provided includes training programs and soil analysis that seeks to help farmers make the most of their land. OCP Africa operates in 16 African nations and has 12 subsidiary companies. OCP’s largest African operation outside of Morocco, in Ethiopia, is set to expand significantly on the completion of a new fertilizer blending unit that will increase supply of customized fertilizer.

In 2021, OCP Group and the Emirati Al Dahra Agricultural Company finalized the creation of a joint venture in Romania. The new company was dubbed SEEFCO S.A. (South East Europe Fertilizer Company).The first OCP chemical site, the Safi complex started its activities in 1965 to process the phosphate rock from Benguerir. In addition to fertilizer and phosphoric acid production units, the site has a phosphate washing unit and a sulfuric acid plant.

What is the source of rock phosphate?
phosphate mineral found as an accessory mineral in practically all kinds of igneous rocks. Sometimes, it is concentrated in pegmatites, metallic veins and magmatic deposits. It also occurs in metamorphic rocks and as a secondary mineral in phosphatic rocks of sedimentary origin.
In 2016, the mines’ produced 6.3MT of Phosphate Rock, representing 23% of the group’s total output. Since 2017, the mine has been one of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University’s testing sites that is open to the scientific community and allows researchers from partner universities to test full-scale solutions in key areas. Called the ”Advanced Mining Technology Platform,” this pilot mine has many purposes.Higher reduction in C:N and C:P ratio and increase in water-soluble P were recorded in rock-phosphorus-enriched manure when inoculated with phosphate-solubilizing microorganisms [34] with citric, malic, oxalic, and formic acids with citric acid having maximum P-solubilizing efficiency [46]. Higher rate of nitrogen and sulfur mineralization has been observed with rock-phosphate-enriched compost along with 50% NPK after 120 days and significant improvement in available P with progress of incubation period indicating its availability for longer period of time compared with 100% NPK [45, 47].Composting is common practice in India; however, it is characterized with lower nutrient concentration. Around 500 mT of crop residues is generated in India of which three-fourth is contributed by the cereals. Enrichment of compost with rock phosphate has twin benefits with enriched nutrient content and comparatively more solublization of phosphate mineral. Addition of rock phosphate is found to not only increase the nutrient content of rice straw compost but also reduce C:N ratio when added in combination of waste mica [42].The major functions of phosphorus are as structural element of nucleic acids; phospholipids of biomembrane forming bridge between triglyceride and other molecules; energy-rich phosphates and phosphate esters in metabolism; acts as regulator in glycolysis, photosynthesis, respiration, nitrogen assimilation, starch synthesis in chloroplast; detoxification of heavy metals by binding with phytates [11, 12]. Phosphorus control over photosynthesis involves ratio of Pi to triose phosphate; light activation of ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase; activation of fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase, sedoheptulose 1,7-bisphosphatase; ATP/ADP ratio; decreased regeneration of RuBP, and low sink strength under P-deficient conditions leading to reduced photosynthesis [12]. The stored inorganic phosphate in the plant varies according to its availability; however, phosphorus in metabolism remains stable with former acting as buffer [13]. Phosphorus supply is more critical in the early season as observed in various annual crops; however, later stage supplementation improves yield though plant is also able to remobilize the stored phosphates to the grains [13]. Partial acidulation of rock phosphate with locally sourced material such as farm residues, manure, and compost is cost-effective technique to make phosphorus available by the release of chelating action forming complexes and humic acid [38]. Acidulation of rock phosphate with gypsum in wheat crop reported highest though nonsignificant among all acidulates and more than the treatment having soluble P fertilizer source [56]. Gypsum along with PSB had significantly higher yield sweet pepper yield when applied with rock phosphate compared with its use without gypsum [57].

Rock phosphate is made to react with sulfuric acid for production of single super phosphate. Similarly, gypsum can also serve as source of partial acidulation of rock phosphate. Total reserve of gypsum in India stands at 36.6 mT with 80% of the total reserve under fertilizer grade and Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, and Gujarat as the major states [31]. Low-grade gypsum is utilized as soil amendment for the sodic soils.
Performance of struvite as phosphorus source in various crops. Source of extraction is mentioned and commercial fertilizers are used as control. The effect of struvite on chlorophyll is also mentioned as it is source of magnesium.We are a community of more than 103,000 authors and editors from 3,291 institutions spanning 160 countries, including Nobel Prize winners and some of the world’s most-cited researchers. Publishing on IntechOpen allows authors to earn citations and find new collaborators, meaning more people see your work not only from your own field of study, but from other related fields too.

Phosphorus constitutes 0.2% (0.1–0.5%) in the plant system. Most of the phosphorus is absorbed in the form of primary orthophosphate ions; however, it is also absorbed in the form of secondary orthophosphate. Phosphorus is not reduced like nitrates and sulfates and rather exists as inorganic phosphate or esterifies to carbon chain through hydroxyl group or attaches to another phosphate group through energy-rich pyrophosphate bonds [11].
The process of super phosphate production by solubilizing bones in sulfuric acid was separately patented by J B Lawes and James Murray in 1842 leading to the development of superphosphate and mixed fertilizer industry [3, 19]. Phosphorus consumption in the post-World War II era was not that much intensified; however, with introduction of Green Revolution after mid-twentieth century, there was increase in use of phosphorus fertilizer along with nitrogen and potassium owing to introduction of the fertilizer-responsive varieties. Both annual phosphate rock extraction and per capita production have seen consistent growth of 3–4% and 1.4%, respectively, with an increase of more than 300% phosphorus fertilizer consumption between 1961 and 2013, however, characterized by a decline post 1989 for a considerable period owing to disintegration of Soviet Union and decreased fertilizer demand in Western Europe and North America [19, 20]. More than 70% of the world phosphorus reserves are located in South Africa, Morocco and Western Sahara and United States [21] and Brazil and Peru in South America; China, Iraq, Israel, and Jordan in Asia; Australia in Oceania; Former Soviet Union in Europe are some major countries continent-wise [22]. The mineral resource extraction follows a mountain/ U-shaped curve where there is initial increase followed by the plateau and then decline in production with time [22]. Phosphorus reserve exploitation has been correlated with time, and it is considered to have “peak P” analogous to the “peak oil” by 2035, after which demand will outstrip supply [3, 23]. With current utilization rate, the phosphate rock reserves are expected to last for 50–400 years [24, 25].Phosphorus is one of the primary nutrients required in crop production. Rock phosphate is the raw material required for the manufacturing of soluble phosphorus fertilizers, which is nonrenewable in nature and expected to last for 50–400 years. The restriction of resources to few geographical locations makes its supply more vulnerable. In India, 90% of the rock phosphate for fertilizer manufacturing is imported. However, the low quality of rock phosphate deposits available in India can be utilized with certain modifications in the form of addition of phosphate-solubilizing bacteria, addition of gypsum, and in the form of phospho-enriched compost. Agriculture, livestock, urban and industrial waste can also prove to be a source of phosphorus through crystallization of struvite. There are encouraging results of struvite compared with soluble phosphorus fertilizers. This will reduce the import dependency in India as well as encourage the Atmanirbhar initiative in phosphorus fertilizer.

India has substantial reserves of low-grade phosphorus [29, 30], which can be utilized as nutrient source. Total resource of rock phosphate in India is estimated at 312.67 mT of which only 45.80 mT constitutes reserve [31]. Of the total resources, only 8% constitutes fertilizer grade and around 37% is classified under low-grade reserve [31]. However, direct application of rock phosphate is only suited for acidic soils, not for the neutral to alkaline soils where pH is more than 5.5–6.0, and is less reactive, of low grade, and has poor agronomic efficiency [32, 33, 34, 35, 36].

Before the utilization of phosphate rocks for commercial fertilizer production, bones, corpolites (fossilized animal dung), and guano were the main sources of phosphorus supplementation [3]. It is evident that various sources of phosphorus had been utilized including crop residues; human, animal, fish, and bird waste from Middle East to Japan [2].
Research evidences showing utilization of rock phosphate with PSB strain in different crops. The comparison for the crops/cropping system is done with control and commercial phosphorus fertilizer, and summarized findings are mentioned.The extraction of struvite has been from the various sources. It is now utilized as the fertilizers or mixed with other fertilizers for value addition having good market and used in crops such as paddy, vegetables, and flowers and even reported to increase quality of paddy [63]. Performance of crops when applied with struvite when compared with chemical fertilizers is presented in Table 4. The similar role can be played by higher seed phosphorus content where it will supply early seedling growth P requirement leading to better root development and thus giving access to growth limiting water and mineral nutrients [14]. Phosphorus is required more for the nodule growth and nitrogenase activity in the N-fixing plants than for the whole plant growth [15, 16]. Phosphorus supply increases the root diameter and dry weight; however, increased root shoot diameter, root hair length and density, root branching, root hair are observed under P-deficient conditions to increase P acquisition [17, 18]. Effect of phospho-enriched compost on various crops/cropping system. Source of organic matter in compost is indicated and yields as well as nodule growth are mentioned in comparison to control/soluble phosphatic fertilizers.

What companies produce phosphate?
They are listed in alphabetical order and had market caps over $10 million as of May 2, 2023.Arianne Phosphate (TSXV:DAN) Company Profile. … Avenira (ASX:AEV) Company Profile. … Centrex Metals (ASX:CXM) … Chatham Rock Phosphate (TSXV:NZP) … Fertoz (ASX:FTZ) … Itafos (TSXV:IFOS) … Minbos Resources (ASX:MNB) … Mosaic (NYSE:MOS)
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In cropping systems, residual effect of enriched compost is found to significantly increase the total phosphorus, enhance grain and stover yield and P uptake and its use efficiency compared with similar P dose from phosphorus fertilizer [45, 48]. Rock-phosphate-enriched compost reported significantly highest grain yield and P uptake in cowpea when compared with other treatments including P fertilizer as sole source [49].
Steel slag is the by-product of steel industry. In total, 150–180 kg steel slag is generated for 1 ton of steel production in India [68] and has been estimated at 39 mT for 2017–18 [69]. Per capita steel consumption is expected to increase more than double between 2018 and 2030–31. Thus, there exists a huge potential of generation of steel slag. In countries such as United States, Japan, and European countries, more than 80% of steel slag is recycled, whereas for countries such as China and India, it is less than 30% [70]. While slag is rich source of calcium, silicon, iron, it also reported to contain up to 4% phosphorus [71]. Application of slag is reported to increase the dry weight, yield, and phosphorus uptake in maize [72]. In addition to this, application of steel slag is advantageous in increasing the quality of the produce, source of silica to the crops, promotes immobilization of heavy metals, reduction of disease incidence in crops, and promoting carbon sequestration and reducing methane emission and can act as potential liming material [73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78].The acidulation of these rock phosphates either with the sulfur-based minerals or sulfur or organic matter holds promise to increase its availability in the soil. Addition of rock phosphate to compost or straw can be useful in increasing the phosphorus availability to the crop. The composting process leads to the mobilization of phosphorus in the rock phosphate, in addition to supplying secondary and micronutrients [37].The term phosphorus derived from the Greek word “Phos” meaning light, and “phorus” means bearer. Elemental form of phosphorus was discovered by German Alchemist, Henning Brandt in 1669 [1, 2]. Phosphorus evolved from seventeenth century as philosopher‘s stone to medicinal phosphorus, flammable phosphorus, essential nutrient in crop production, element of war, cause of eutrophication to its emerging scarcity in recent twenty-first century [2]. Earlier it had been established that adding ground bone increases the crop yield and subsequently Lawes (1842) patented the process of phosphate solublization [3]. With the proposition of Criteria of Essentiality (1939) by Arnon and Stout, it had been established that the roles and functions of each essential nutrient are irreplaceable in plant system. Phosphorus is one of the essential nutrients for plant, which extends to animals also [2]. Around 80% of the world phosphorus is utilized in agriculture [1]. Rock phosphate is one of the basic raw materials for the synthesis of phosphatic fertilizers [4]; however, its nonrenewable nature increases the vulnerability in the long term.

Who is the largest producer of phosphate rock?
The United States is the world’s leading producer and consumer of phosphate rock, which is used to manufacture phosphate fertilizers and industrial products.
Phosphorus in Indian soils occurs primarily in inorganic form contributing 54–84% of the total phosphorus and organic contributing 16–46% [5]. More than 90% districts in India are classified under low-to-moderate phosphorus availability [5, 6]. The phosphorus status of soil doesn’t necessarily reflects its availability to the crop plants, which is governed by the presence of calcium, iron, and aluminum phosphates; thus, only 30% of the soil phosphorus is utilized by the crop and rest remains in the soil [7]. Therefore, it demands the external application of phosphorus through fertilizers. India imports the high-grade rock phosphate for the synthesis of soluble phosphorus fertilizers. This import cost along with the decontrol of the phosphorus and potassium fertilizers in 1992 has led to the fertilizer application in favor of urea. The turmoil in the Former Soviet region in present times has also increased the vulnerability of the rock phosphate import in near future. Therefore, it is important to increase self-reliance in the field of phosphorus fertilizer application. It has been reported that indigenous rock phosphate if suitable is treated with solubilizing microorganisms or acidulates; there can be increased solublization and availability of phosphorus to the plants and consequent yields [8, 9]. Precipitation of struvite from the agriculture and livestock waste can prove another efficient alternative [10]. The major objectives of the following discussion in chapter are to find out in ways and means to enhance the dependability of phosphorus fertilizer on indigenous resources in general and on farm resources in particular.Subscribe to receive an email notification when a new publication is added to this page. On the Questions tab of the subscriber preferences page, please select ”Phosphate Rock” and any other options in which you may be interested. Please see the list services page for more information.

What is an alternative to rock phosphate?
Low-grade gypsum is utilized as soil amendment for the sodic soils. It can also be utilized as an acidulate for the rock phosphate treatment. In addition to the extraction of phosphorus from rock phosphates, gypsum serves as source of calcium and sulfur to the crop plants.
Phosphorus is an essential element for plant and animal nutrition. Most phosphorus is consumed as a principal component of nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium fertilizers used on food crops throughout the world. Phosphate rock minerals are the only significant global resources of phosphorus. The United States is the world’s leading producer and consumer of phosphate rock, which is used to manufacture phosphate fertilizers and industrial products.

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