One of our founding members, PhosAgro, had a great way to celebrate World Soil Day yesterday, with the announcement that it was launching a joint programme with the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation to support sustainable soil management in Africa, Latin America and the Near East.

PhosAgro has committed USD 1.2 million to help farmers to enhance their capacities in soil condition assessment and sustainable soil management, as well as facilitate knowledge exchange among farmers. This programme will provide farmers with special kits for assessing soil conditions, called Soil Doctors Testing Kits. These will be developed and distributed to at least 5,000 farmers in participating countries.

Another key element of the two-year project is setting up regional soil laboratory networks (RESOLANs) in Africa, Latin America and the Near East. The project envisages strengthening of soil laboratories in developing countries with a focus on assessing fertilisers' quality and safety.

More details of this interesting new programme are available on the FAO website.