IFA Inputs Project Team Leader and Munster Regional Chairman James McCarthy said that current price offers for granular urea and CAN are €40/t and €20/t respectively below last year’s price levels, but CAN prices in particular are failing to reflect the continuing drop in international oil and gas prices.
Mr McCarthy said, “Farmers should look at switching from CAN to urea as the latter is trading at a 25% discount on a price per kg of nitrogen. Wholesale granular urea prices continue to drop as it is a globally traded product while CAN, which is mainly a northern European product, is tending upwards. CAN manufacturers are attempting to push through price increases strengthening their margins at farmers’ expense”.
“Despite falling commodity prices there has been a lift in the volumes of new season fertiliser purchased by farmers and buyer groups pre-Christmas. Granular urea in top lift big bags has traded from €345/t to €370/t delivered farm with CAN in single lift bags trading from €265/t – €280/t. Cut and pasture swards are trading around the €375/t to €390/t price mark. The keenest quotes are in the North East and North midlands. However southern retailers are looking for a significant premium. Once again buyer groups and individual volume buyers are securing further discounts on the above quotes.”
James McCarthy said it is important that farmers shop around before purchasing as there is a significant variation in prices. Co-ordinating full loads among a few neighbours can deliver significant savings as transport is a major cost in moving fertiliser.