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Fertilizer Prices: “Somewhat Varied”

DTN writer Russ Quinn reported last week that, “For the first time in several months retail fertilizer prices are somewhat varied, according to prices tracked by DTN for the first week of May 2023.”

Quinn noted that, “Anhydrous continues to lead fertilizer prices lower. The nitrogen fertilizer was 8% lower compared to last month and had an average price of $926/ton.

“DTN Retail Fertilizer Trends,” by Russ Quinn. DTN- Progressive Farmer (May 10, 2023).

“Four other fertilizers were just slightly lower compared to last month. MAP had an average price of $805/ton, potash $623/ton, urea $599/ton and 10-34-0 $739/ton.

“Three fertilizers, meanwhile, were slightly higher compared to last month. DAP had an average price of $826/ton, UAN28 $424/ton and UAN32 $507/ton.”

The DTN article added that, “All fertilizers are now double digits lower compared to one year ago. 10-34-0 is 18% less expensive, DAP is 22% lower, MAP is 26% less expensive, potash is 29% lower, UAN32 is 31% less expensive, UAN28 is 33% lower and both anhydrous and urea are 40% less expensive compared to a year prior.”

Meanwhile, Reuters writer Rod Nickel reported late last week that, “Canada’s Nutrien Ltd may consider further slowing its expansion of potash capacity, its CEO said on Thursday, after falling prices and sales volumes led the world’s biggest fertilizer producer to cut its annual profit guidance.

“Potash prices have been volatile since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, 2022, as sanctions against big global producers Russia and Belarus initially drove up prices, causing farmers to buy less and bring prices back down.”

Nickel explained that, “Nutrien is increasing Canadian potash production by 20% to an annual 18 million tonnes by 2026, a delay of one year from its original plan.

The expansion may slow further, CEO Ken Seitz said on a conference call.

“‘Yes we would consider slowing down,’ Seitz said. ‘If we see that the market’s not there, then we’ll pace our capital accordingly.'”

Elsewhere, in its weekly Grain Transportation Report on Thursday, the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service indicated that, “For the week ending May 8, the U.S. average diesel fuel price fell 9.6 cents from the previous week to $3.922 per gallon, 170.1 cents below the same week last year. This is the first time since February 7, 2022, the diesel price has fallen below the $4 per gallon mark. This week’s decline is also the largest drop since December 19, 2022, when diesel price dropped 15.8 cents per gallon.

“Diesel prices fell in all regions, but the largest drop occurred in the Gulf region, where prices fell 14.1 cent per gallon. According to the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, retail diesel prices are expected to average $3.90 per gallon in 2023 and $3.62 per gallon in 2024. These prices are down from EIA’s prior forecast by 21 cents and 25 cents, respectively.”

Keith Good Photo

Keith Good is the Farm Policy News editor for the farmdoc project. He has previously worked for the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, and compiled the daily News Summary from 2003-2015. He is a graduate of Purdue University (M.S.- Agricultural Economics), and Southern Illinois University School of Law.

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