The Flow of Phosphorus in Food Production and Consumption Systems

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Improving Water and Nutrient-Use Efficiency in Food Production Systems, 2013, pp. 79 - 91
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Phosphorus is a crucial nutrient for the production of food, but at the same time it is a key contributor to eutrophication of aquatic environments through leakage and runoff from agricultural land. Hence, sustainable future pathways of phosphorus use in food production and consumption need to consider a variety of sectors. This chapter discusses the sustainability challenges associated with the use of phosphorus in global and regional food production and consumption systems. It focuses on the limited future availability of phosphorus for agricultural use, in part due to its inefficient utilisation throughout the chain of food production and consumption, with consequences for water quality, including regional examples. In a global sustainability context, future research and policy will need to consider synergies between sustainable phosphorus use measures and other global challenges, including climate change, water scarcity and pollution. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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