Slow demand keeps lid on nitrogen prices

Extremely slow farmer buying is keeping nitrogen prices in check. February saw little, if any, movement and current levels are just £2-£3/t above late January prices for UK-manufactured ammonium nitrate (AN).

This puts it onto farm for March delivery at £227-£230/t on normal payment terms.

Imported material is in a wider range, with  some offers from those holding more stock than they would like.

However, strong sales by Egypt and large purchases by the US have put upwards pressure on the global urea market, say traders.

See also: New nematicide Red Tractor rules for farmers explained

For UK buyers, the recent weakening of sterling has not helped, although at £245-£250/t in March, it is still good value against AN.

While urea is readily available, importers are wary of committing to new cargoes because of uncertainty over farmer demand.

AN prices on continental Europe have risen recently. Traders suggest this and the firmer urea market could push the UK AN market up a bit in April but this is weather dependent.

Phosphate and potash prices are steady.

Fertiliser update (£/t delivered March 2020)

UK 34.5% N (Oct) Imported AN Granular urea 46% N Potash MOP Phosphate DAP Phosphate TSP
£227-£230 £210-£223 £245-£250 £245-£250 £290-£303 £248-£250
All illustrated prices are based on full loads for cash payment on 28-day terms.
DECEMBER
2

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