ICL is creating a new global knowledge and research center for fertilizers and plant nutrition

31 July 2015
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The Center for Fertilization and Plant Nutrition (CFPN), a new center for research and knowledge in the field of fertilizers and plant nutrition, is to be established under a cooperation agreement between the Israeli Agricultural Research Organization (ARO; Volcani Center) and ICL (NYSE and TASE: ICL).

CFPN will operate at the ARO Gilat Research Center in the Negev, with research conducted by ARO scientists in partnership with colleagues from other research institutions. The center will also closely collaborate with the regional council representing farmers in the area. Research will be developed and expanded under various themes (see below) and CFPN will offer scholarships and research grants to graduate and PhD students from Israel and other countries. In addition, funds will be allocated to dissemination and sharing of research findings to a global audience and to hosting international conferences, which will help cement Israel’s place as a world leader in the field of fertilization and plant nutrition.

"Plant fertilization has a decisive impact on crop quantity and quality," emphasizes Nissim Adar, CEO of ICL Fertilizers. "Optimizing and adapting fertilization to the needs of the crop leads to increased yield per unit area, greater plant resistance to stresses, and improved crop quality. It enables farmers to feed the growing population and to fight world hunger. "

However, despite the crucial importance of fertilization, and global awareness of the need to increase the amount of food produced and its nutritional value, the number of researchers in this field is diminishing. "It is important for us to produce a new generation of researchers in this field," says Prof. Yoram Kapulnik, Director of ARO. "It is clear that this knowledge is needed today more than ever. Correct fertilization increases crop resistance to diseases and pests and thus can help reduce the use of pesticides. It also allows plants to better cope with various stresses, and can enhance the nutritive and health value of the produce. The shelf-life of the crop after harvesting can also be extended.”

“This collaboration between ARO’s Volcani Center and ICL - a joint mobilization of the public, private and agricultural sectors – will contribute to improving food security and ensuring food supply in the future,” concludes Prof. Kapulnik.

CFPN research themes:

1. Evaluation of new fertilizers and application methods on crops
2. Optimization of fertilization practices in selected crops
3. Create new soil and plant advanced nutrient diagnostic tools and methods
4. Identify and evaluate methods for recycling nutrients from organic and mineral waste products
5. Development of fertilization practices to improve nutraceutical values in crops
6. Study and development of materials and methods for advanced foliar fertilization
7. Study and development of uptake enhancers of plant nutrient-use efficiency
8. Development of methods for improving soil health, postharvest practices and stress resistance
9. Develop advanced knowledge transfer and share tools for plant nutrition in developing countries

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About Agricultural Research Organization (ARO):

The Agricultural Research Organization (ARO) is part of the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The organization is responsible for most of the agricultural research conducted in Israel. This research aims to improve existing agricultural production systems and to introduce new products, processes and equipment, thereby ensuring the basis of Israel’s future agriculture. The ARO has an extensive research infrastructure that supports both basic and applied research, conducted by more than 200 Ph.D. scientists and 300 engineers and technicians. Numerous breeds, methods and technologies have been developed at ARO and successfully transferred to commercial markets in the form of private and public agritech companies. For more information, please visit www.agri.gov.il.


Forward Looking Statement
This announcement contains forward-looking assessments and judgments regarding macro-economic conditions and the Group’s markets, and there is no certainty as to whether, when and/or at what rate these projections will materialize. Management’s projections are likely to change in light of market fluctuations, especially in ICL’s manufacturing locations and target markets. In addition, ICL is likely to be affected by changes in the demand and price environment for its products as well as the cost of shipping and energy, whether caused by actions of governments, manufacturers or consumers. ICL can also be affected by changes in the capital markets, including fluctuations in currency exchange rates, credit availability, interest rates, etc.