Five ways Solvay helps increase the sustainability of food production

Feeding a growing global population is one of humanity’s major challenges, now and for the decades to come. In short, resources are getting scarce, yet somehow the world’s food production must continue to increase. The only solution to solve this seemingly impossible dilemma is to resort to more sustainable practices across the entire food industry, from field to farm to processing facility.


Many solutions exist in order to produce more food while sparing resources and ecosystems. Whether for boosting crops, increasing dairy yields or answering the food industry’s demand for essential ingredients without resorting to unsustainable resources, chemistry is often the answer. In fact, among Solvay’s vast portfolio, here are five products we designed to help sustainably feed the planet.

Fertilizers without the heavy metals

Phosphate-based fertilizers contain heavy metals such as cadmium and arsenic that seep into the soil and the entire food chain, from vegetables to meat to seafood. We’ve developed a reagent that removes those noxious elements during the manufacturing process of fertilizers. Crops grow just as well, and consumers and ecosystems are spared this toxic intake.

Fortified crops that require less water and inputs

This revolutionary biostimulant boosts seed germination, reducing the crops’ need for water, fertilizer and pesticides, and is made from guar, a legume sustainably grown in India. As such, it’s fully biodegradable and non-toxic; a truly miraculous innovation stemming from a new application of an existing product in our portfolio.

Healthy fish farms and cleaner oceans

Fish farming is a rapidly growing industry and a sustainable source of protein to feed the world, as it requires significantly less resources than producing meat. Solvay partnered with Aqua Pharma to create an eco-friendly parasite control product for aquaculture: oxygenated water that efficiently rids fish of diseases before decomposing into nothing more than oxygen and water, thus posing no harm to ecosystems!

All the natural vanillin the world needs

Vanillin is everywhere, from pastries to chocolates to sports nutrition - but only a fraction of it is actually derived from vanilla beans. We developed an innovative process to produce vanillin from rice: bio-based and sustainable, it’s the only such product on the market deemed “natural vanillin” even under the most stringent regulations.

Helping animal farming preserve resources

Producing more milk to answer rising global demand without adding the strain of thousands of additional cows on our planet’s resources is a key challenge for the dairy industry. Concentrated cattle feed is an efficient way to increase yields, but it harms the animals’ health. Fortunately, Solvay has a 100% safe and non-ecotoxic solution that helps preserve our planet’s resources: BICAR® Z.