DTN Fertilizer Trends: Prices Rise, but at Slower Rate

    ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

    Retail fertilizer prices continued to rise the second week of December 2021, according to sellers surveyed by DTN. There are signs, however, that the climb may be slowing somewhat.

    Only three of the eight major fertilizers showed a significant move higher; DTN designates a substantial move as anything 5% or more. This is the first time since the third week of September 2021 that fewer than five fertilizers were appreciably more expensive.

    Anhydrous led the way, up 16% from a month prior. The nitrogen fertilizer’s average price was at $1,420/ton, which continues to be at its all-time high in the data DTN has collected since November 2008.

    10-34-0 was 7% more expensive compared to last month. The starter fertilizer’s average price was at $790/ton.

    Urea was 5% more expensive compared to last month. The nitrogen fertilizer had an average price of $901/ton, which was also an all-time high.

    The remaining five fertilizers had just slight price increases compared to the prior month. DAP had an average price of $858/ton, MAP $935/ton, potash $796/ton, UAN28 $579/ton and UAN32 $663/ton.

    On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.98/lb.N, anhydrous $0.87/lb.N, UAN28 $1.03/lb.N and UAN32 $1.04/lb.N.

    Dow Jones reported last week frustrated farmers are having to adjust their spring planting plans because of the considerably higher fertilizer prices. This could lead some producers to shift acres to less fertilizer-intensive crops, while others plan to cut back their overall fertilizer use.

    This fertilizer reduction could lead to lower yields and less grain production and translate into higher prices for farm commodities. This situation would further inflate prices of food staples such as cereal and cooking oil, as well as beef and other meats as producers rely on grains to feed livestock, Dow Jones reported.

    “It’s stressful,” said Sean Elliot, a sixth-generation farmer in Iroquois County, Illinois. He plans to grow more soybeans in 2022 instead of planting his usual amount of corn acres, which uses more fertilizer.

    Retail fertilizer prices compared to a year ago show all fertilizers have increased significantly, with several fertilizers having well over 100% price increases.

    10-34-0 is now 71% more expensive, MAP is 79% higher, DAP is 84% more expensive, potash is 121% higher, urea is 149% more expensive, UAN32 is 162% higher, UAN28 175% is more expensive and anhydrous is 215% higher compared to last year.

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    DTN surveys more than 300 retailers, gathering roughly 1,700 fertilizer price bids, to compile the DTN Fertilizer Index each week. In addition to national averages, MyDTN subscribers can access the full DTN Fertilizer Index, which includes state averages, here.

    The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) reported farmers are struggling with skyrocketing fertilizer prices. You can read it here.

    The recent DTN Global Fertilizer Outlook series focused attention on what the world expectation could be in 2022. This series examined the supply and demand of nutrients globally as well as what direction fertilizer prices could go in the New Year.

    • Read the nitrogen outlook here.
    • Read the phosphorus outlook here.
    • Read the potash outlook here.
    • Read what Mosaic says about global issues pushing prices up here.
    DRY
    Date Range DAP MAP POTASH UREA
    Dec 14-18 2020 466 522 360 361
    Jan 11-15 2021 486 551 373 373
    Feb 8-12 2021 588 642 398 453
    Mar 8-12 2021 615 690 423 483
    Apr 5-9 2021 618 699 431 504
    May 3-7 2021 634 705 436 514
    May 31-Jun 4 2021 652 712 443 524
    Jun 28-Jul 2 2021 677 721 476 542
    Jul 26-30 2021 695 753 549 554
    Aug 23-27 2021 697 756 569 557
    Sep 20-24 2021 709 786 625 585
    Oct 18-22 2021 810 863 716 735
    Nov 15-19 2021 825 911 769 859
    Dec 13-17 2021 858 935 796 901
    LIQUID
    Date Range 10-34-0 ANHYD UAN28 UAN32
    Dec 14-18 2020 463 450 210 253
    Jan 11-15 2021 469 474 210 247
    Feb 8-12 2021 512 524 243 285
    Mar 8-12 2021 581 625 306 344
    Apr 5-9 2021 605 692 341 378
    May 3-7 2021 618 712 358 398
    May 31-Jun 4 2021 619 719 363 412
    Jun 28-Jul 2 2021 625 730 366 421
    Jul 26-30 2021 631 737 365 419
    Aug 23-27 2021 632 748 370 420
    Sep 20-24 2021 633 772 383 436
    Oct 18-22 2021 659 940 451 492
    Nov 15-19 2021 739 1220 571 651
    Dec 13-17 2021 790 1420 579 663

    Russ Quinn can be reached at russ.quinn@dtn.com

    Follow him on Twitter @RussQuinnDTN

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