By Roger Chesher
EVEN though we are only halfway through the month, it appears that merchants wishing to book nitrogen fertiliser before the 6.00 price hike in January have only two days left.
The December book closes on Friday (15 December), say the manufacturers.
Farm nitrogen business is only at tick-over, despite the large price rise to come. But, given the appalling weather, its obvious that fertiliser will not be uppermost in the mind.
Compounds, however, are moving more steadily; either in the form of NPKs to grass farms or as specialised products for arable top-dressing.
The market for blended fertiliser is quietly under way. List prices seem to be some 4-5 below complex compounds, but farm prices are sometimes keener.
Terra has pitched its blended products some 2/t below complex compound equivalents from Hydro or Kemira.
Imports are slowly moving on to farm and stocks in choked warehouses are being replenished equally slowly.
The overall impression is, however, of the calm before the big spring storm, when record tonnages of product will need to be shifted on to farm.
Meanwhile, Terra is reported to be exporting ammonia to Spain. This move makes sense as, in this truly pan-European market, it is a profitable deal.
With the domestic nitrogen market quiet at present, it is also a way to profit from currently under-used capacity.
On-farm prices have barely changed.
New-season nitrogen (SP5) 34.5%
Anticipated spring price nitrogen
Imported urea (if available)
Imported AN (new season)
Blended 20.10.10 and 25.0.16
|Liquid nitrogen, 37kg/100l or 29.6% N/t|
December, pay cash
January, pay cash
April, pay cash (forecast)
After-cut NK cash
TSP (47% P2O5)
Muriate of Potash (60% K2O)
IRELAND CAN 24.6.12 0.16.36 Complex compounds
Republic of Ireland*
*Note in the Republic of Ireland nutrients are expressed as elements not oxides. Analyses will not be directly comparable with those used in the UK.
*Prices in the Republic are IR
Note All illustrated prices are based on 20-tonne loads for immediate payment. Prices for smaller loads and those with credit terms will vary considerably.
Source: Bridgewater Partnership