World Soil Day [5th December]: History, Significance, Theme

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : Nov 16, 2022, 11:09

World Soil Day is celebrated every year on 5th December to raise awareness about sustainably managing soil resources. This day is recognized by the United Nations and is celebrated worldwide. In India, the Indian Council of Agricultural Research is responsible for conducting a celebration of World Soil Day.

Soil is perhaps one of the most underrated natural resources. It is responsible for providing us with nutrition, shelter, and so much more. Learn about the theme, history, and significance of World Soil Day here.

World Soil Day 2022

Soil Day is an annual event observed in several countries around the world on 5th December. The focus of this day is on raising awareness about soil conservation and encouraging leaders to manage soil sustainably. World Soil Day was endorsed by the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) in June 2013. On 5th December 2014, the first Soil Day was celebrated around the world.

Celebrating Soil Day is important because the level of nutrients and vitamins in the soil has decreased significantly in the last 70 years. Soil degradation gives way to a lot of problems for humans and the environment. Hence, World Soil Day is celebrated to advocate for soil conservation. Here is a brief overview of this day:


World Soil Day


5th December (every year)

Established By

United Nations

Established In

June 2013


To advocate for the sustainable management of soil.

World Soil Day 2022 Theme

Each year on Soil Day, the United Nations announces a new theme or campaign. The celebrations for the day revolves around the same theme. World Soil Day 2022 theme is "Soils: Where food begins." This theme aims to help people realize the importance of soil as the source of all growth.

The theme for World Soil Day 2021 was "Halt soil salinization, boost soil productivity." This theme highlighted the degrading quality of the soil and how different measures must be taken to protect the soil.

In 2020, the theme of International Soil Day was "Keep soil alive, protect soil biodiversity." Soil, as we all know, is home to millions of organisms. Every year, due to different kinds of pollution and deforestation, the top layer of the soil gets washed away. Therefore, it is important to protect this top layer of soil that gets lost or washed away.

History of Soil Day

In June 2013, the FAO conference unanimously backed World Soil Day and proposed its official ratification at the 68th United Nations General Assembly. Soil is one of the most important resources that the earth has given us. In recent years, the quality of the soil has degraded, and it is making agricultural activities difficult. Therefore, it is important to celebrate World Soil Day to spread awareness about the soil and what it takes to keep it healthy.

Here, we have shared the history of Soil Day:

  • At its 68th session in December 2013, the United Nations General Assembly declared 5th December to be World Soil Day.
  • On the 5th December 2014, the first World Soil Day was observed.
  • 5th December was chosen to celebrate World Soil Day as it marks the birth anniversary of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej. This person was behind the inception of this day.

World Soil Day Significance

On the 5th December 2014, the first official World Soil Day was celebrated by the UN General assembly. The International Union of Soil Sciences recommended the celebration of this day. The recommendation was made in 2002. Under the Kingdom of Thailand's Leadership, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) supported the formal foundation of Soil Day as a awareness-raising day, which falls in the scope of the Global Soil Partnership. Here is the significance of Soil Day:

  • On this day, awareness about the importance of soil conservation is spread among people.
  • Soil is not only a resource for humans but is also a home and resource for other living things. On World Soil Day, this awareness is also spread.
  • Soil Day highlights the significance of sustainably managing soil as a resource.

Soil Day - Awards and Recognition

Two important awards are given out to people on World Soil Day. These awards are:

  • The King Bhumibol World Soil Day Award is given out to an individual, a country, or any organization that organizes the best and the most exciting activities on World Soil Day for people to enjoy. The award is based on last year's performance.
  • The Glinka World Soil Prize: This award is presented to some change-makers who come up with innovative solutions to one of the most pressing problems on the earth- Soil Degradation. People who contribute significantly to soil management are honoured and awarded on Soil Day.

Important Current Affairs Topics

National Constitution DayWorld Television Day
International Men’s DayBank Holidays in Haryana
Civil Service DayGoa Liberation Day
International Day for ToleranceInternational Day of Happiness
National Consumer Rights DayWorld AIDS Day

FAQs on World Soil Day

Q1. When is World Soil Day celebrated?

World Soil Day is celebrated every year on 5th December. This day is celebrated to increase awareness regarding the importance of soil conservation. Soil Day was established by the United Nations in June 2013.

Q2. What is the theme of World Soil Day 2022?

World Soil Day 2022 theme is "Soils: Where food begins." This theme highlights soil as the root or source of everything. Each year, the United Nations announces a unique theme on Soil Day.

Q3. When was the first World Soil Day celebrated?

The first World Soil Day was celebrated on the 5th December 2014, after the United Nations officially declared the day in June 2013. Since then, Soil Day has been celebrated every year around the world to advocate for sustainable soil management.

Q4. Why is World Soil Day celebrated?

World Soil Day is celebrated to help people realize the importance of soil as a natural resource. The first World Soil Day was celebrated in 2014 after the UN General Assembly officiated the day in June 2013.