Continuing price rises for fertiliser are anticipated.
“With global demand outstripping supply, Irish fertiliser prices have increased by 6-8% so far in 2015.
“It is anticipated that world demand will continue to increase into the future maintaining upward pressure on prices to the final consumer in Ireland,” said Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney.
“Currently, Europe is only 80% self-sufficient in fertiliser production and must import 20% of its requirements. As such, European and Irish fertiliser prices are strongly linked to global prices and heavily influenced by supply and demand.”
“The advice from Teagasc is for farmers to keep in contact with merchants, as prices often spike at periods of high demand, when European order books are full. Purchasing fertilisers at off-peak periods will help minimise prices. Teagasc further advises that finding alternative sources of major nutrients will save money, and farmers should consider the use of slurry applications to minimise expenditure on chemical fertilisers. In addition, soil testing will prevent unnecessary applications.”
Mr Coveney said no fertilisers are now manufactured in Ireland, resulting in indigenous fertiliser companies being price-takers, dependent on global supply and demand and subject to Euro exchange rates against the US dollar and other currencies.
Fertiliser costs are among the highest input costs in Irish agriculture, at 20% on average, and can amount to double this for certain tillage crops.
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