This week I attended an annual meeting for a large retail group. One of the discussions was about the fertilizer situation in the coming year. What was their take?
There will not be adequate amounts for 2008 due to;
Demand world wide is at an all time high
60% of US fertilizer stocks are imported
Freight to the US has tripled in the past few years
Fall needs have been decided in May/June.
With the exception of Urea expect that there will not be enough other products to meet demand.
At Calcium Products we see this trend as well. I attended a meeting last fall and these comments were echoed. I will be attending a number of fertilizer seminars over the next few months and continue to update you.
So what does this mean for the grower?
Customers unwilling to pay higher prices for inorganic fertilizer will need to find alternatives or change crops. If corn pushes above $4 next year, many will increase corn acres, increasing demand for fertilizer. Most dealers have already locked in their fertilizers for 2008, so expect the price of fertilizer to continue higher. Soybean processors will need to pay above $9/bu to offset any increase in corn price.
If changing the cropping system not an option, then the other option is changing inputs.
In trials 80 lbs of N and 200 lbs of SuperCal 98G yielded 173.8 bushels. 160 lbs of N alone yielded 175.6 bushels. With today's nitrogen costs reaching $0.50 per pound the additional cost of N was $40. The average cost of 200 lbs of SuperCal 98G is around $17.
The lower N rate with SuperCal 98G added cost the grower $57 per acre. The high rate N cost the grower $80 per acres. The premium for the additional 2 bushels was $23 dollars!
The Blogronomist is maintained by Craig Dick, head blogronomist and VP of Sales and Marketing. Here you will find a wide array of blog articles from Craig and expert guests on topics related to soil and crop health, farming, and so much more. If it’s not here, ask us!