With 85-90% of the spring fertiliser market ordered, prices are steady but some local offers could emerge as the end of the season approaches.

Straights will be the main trade from now on, with transport rather than supply once again the main issue.

UK manufactured nitrogen is going on to farm at £290-300/t for April delivery of full loads, while Lithuanian and Polish imported product is £10-15/t cheaper respectively.

Granular urea is competitive at £280-300/t, with import levels having risen in the past year, although much of this is destined for the industrial rather than the agricultural market.

   Fertilser update April 2014 (£/t delivered)
 UK 34.5%  Granular urea (46% N)  Imported AN  20.10.10
 £290-300  £280-300 £270-290 £290-305 (blend)
       £305-320 (compound)
 Potash (MOP)  Phosphate (DAP)  Phosphate (TDSP)  
 £275-290  £380  £285-315 (blend)  

In general, April has so far not been as busy as the trade hoped. In the grassland market there has been a move away from compounds to straight nitrogen.

The expectation is that new season prices will be issued in late May or early June.

Urea is expected to drive the market and there are already some offers for September to December delivery at a very competitive £260/t delivered to farm, although traders point out that politics along with gas and oil prices could quickly change this.