A growing world population, in numbers as well as wealth, challenges us now as well as in the future in terms of a global food security. About half of the current world crop production is based on mineral phosphorus fertilization and therefore make phosphorus an essential piece in the puzzle.
The transdisciplinarity laboratory „Sustainable Mineral Resources" (SMR TdLab) with emphasis on Global Food Security and Phosphate Rock, founded 2016 at the Danube University Krems, is doing research for a responsible, sustainable, and efficient use of the essential element phosphorus. The SMR TdLab is also part of Global TraPs, a worldwide transdisciplinary project with the aim of global food security and sustainable phosphorus management.
In order to improve the current system it must first be understood. The complex structure is illustrated and represented through the extended phosphorus supply chain. Phosphate rock represents the major and simultaneously finite source for phosphorus. Efficiency, and in particular resource efficiency plays a major role in securing long term supply. Within the SMR TdLab the development of beneficiation rates on a global as well as organizational level are examined and illustrated. So far a data envelopment analysis leads to the conclusion that neither the type of ownership nor the size of a company influence its efficiency significantly.
Current research widens the field of research by integrating further mineral and agricultural commodities as wells as economic indicators in addition to phosphate rock.