Field of Barley

Fertiliser Focus – 24th May 2021

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Ammonium Nitrate

There are strong rumours in the fertiliser trade that CF Fertilisers will be ready to launch ‘New Season’ Ammonium Nitrate prices as some stage this week. Last year the market began on 28th CF can be unpredictable so there are no guarantees here. One thing that can unfortunately be assured of is that the starting price for 2021/22 season will be substantially higher than for 2020/21. All commodities are still riding the wave of the so-called ‘Super-Cycle’ which has led to higher prices for grains leading in turn to higher demand for fertilisers thus higher prices for Nitrogen of any description. There is of course far more to it than this, cost of production has also gone up as part of this cycle. Natural Gas can account for up to 90% of the cost of production. This sometimes brings howls of derision from trade and grower alike as it has been used as an excuse at the start of many a new season to justify pricing. However, it is an unavoidable fact, production of Ammonium Nitrate requires huge volumes of gas, equivalent to a modern conurbation such as Manchester daily. UK Natural Gas Futures in May 2020 were 28.08 p/therm, today it is 60.52 p. Exactly what all this means to U.K A.N prices will be know very soon, and we will soon find out the reaction from growers. This new season may be a more considered decision from growers both in terms of the amounts covered and which products to choose.


The inter-play between China and India is still the major factor driving urea markets now. India’s part this week is another import tender, due to close on May 25th. China’s part is how much are their manufacturers prepared to export and are shipping owners prepared to take the additional costs due to the Covid requirements in India. In the most recent tender, China declined to take part in any great volume, as a result prices increased particularly from North Africa, important from a UK perspective as the major source of Urea. If this type of inter-play continues urea levels will remain firm, once U.K A.N prices launch we will be able to evaluate clearly where urea fits for UK growers.

Yara New Season Webinar

Don’t buy your Nitrogen until you’ve watched this ! That is the message from Yara this week as they prepare to broadcast on Tuesday 25th This webinar will cover everything needed for planning crop nutrition for next season. Topics covered will include a review of the global crop outlook; tips on selecting the best fertiliser product for you; Sulphur and P K management, as well as reducing emissions. Natalie Wood, Yara’s Arable Agronomist and James Webster from AHDB will present. Click below to register:


Economic Data as at close on Friday 21st May v (14th May 2021) £ = $ 1.4172 ($1.4096) £ = 1.1626 (€ 1.1607)   Crude Oil = $ 66.55 ($ 68.83) Natural Gas =$ 2.96 ($2.97) Please treat pricing on graphs as a guide, please use quote request form for an up-to-date price.