Don’t Have All Your Fertilizer Orders In Yet? Better Hurry!

Nitrogen fertilizer supplies are tight, so make sure your grower-customers are putting in their orders — if they haven’t already.

Supplies of nitrogen fertilizers, as well as phosphorus and potassium fertilizers, are tight throughout the U.S., making this the time to plan ahead, a Kansas State University (K-State) agronomist says.

In fact, it is currently difficult to buy fertilizer nitrogen for winter wheat topdressing and/or this spring’s row crops unless the supply has already been lined up — regardless of what the posted prices are, says Dale Leikam, K-State Research and Extension nutrient management specialist.

“The tight supply situation applies to all the main nitrogen fertilizer sources — UAN solution, urea, and ammonia — as well as other phosphorus and potassium fertilizers. Fertilizer prices are continuing to increase and supplies will likely remain very tight for the foreseeable future,” Leikam says. “Therefore, producers should keep in close contact with their supplier in order to line up their anticipated fertilizer needs. Waiting until it is time to apply crop nutrients to make arrangements for fertilizer needs could leave producers on the outside looking in.”

The sharp increase in price and accompanying fertilizer N shortage is not a sudden development, the agronomist explained. Unprecedented market forces have markedly changed the fertilizer industry over the past decade which has set the stage for the current supply/demand imbalance and resulting high prices, he says.

(Sources: Plant Management Network and Kansas State University)

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