Fertilizer Trends to Watch

Fertilizer Trends to Watch

With fall planting time upon us, many farmers are considering their ag input needs and are determining how much and when to purchase fertilizer.

Far West Agribusiness Executive Director Jim Fitzgerald gives some trends to watch

Fitzgerald: "Probably first and foremost, it is could to remember that fertilizer is a commodity -- just like corn or wheat. As those commodity prices go up, you can kinda of expect -- there are speculators in the market -- that those prices can go up as well. Also what affects fertilizer prices is planting. Everybody knows that corn is a pretty good user of nutrients so as acreages for corn goes up you'll see the demand for more fertilizer go up sometimes, prices will follow. There is always farm programs put out there by USDA that can have an affect on fertilizer prices. Weather is always a big variable. If there is a drought or fires those will affect yields. If there is favorable weather and we get a great production then those nutrients need to be replaced the next year and that will drive demand up."

Fitzgerald mentions that global usage of nutrients also plays a role in pricing and availability. For example he mentions the U.S. uses approximately 12 percent of the world's nutrients, India 16 percent, Europe and Russia are about 39 percent combined and China consumes 29 percent of world's nutrients.

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