Average Retail Prices of Most Fertilizers Continue Slightly Higher
OMAHA (DTN) — Average retail prices for most fertilizers were slightly higher the first week of April 2017, according to fertilizer retailers surveyed by DTN.

It was the third straight week that not all of the eight major fertilizers were higher-priced. And for seven of the eight fertilizers that were higher, prices were up only slightly.

DAP had average price of $438 per ton, MAP $466/ton, potash $338/ton, anhydrous $505/ton, UAN28 $248/ton and UAN32 $280/ton.

One fertilizer, urea, was down from the previous month. The nitrogen fertilizer was just slightly lower in price compared to a month ago with an average price of $354 per ton.

On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.39/lb.N, anhydrous $0.31/lb.N, UAN28 $0.44/lb.N and UAN32 $0.44/lb.N.

With corn planting beginning in some areas of the Corn Belt, farmers are in the final stages of applying fertilizer for the upcoming crop. Wayne Martin, who farms near Shelby, Iowa, said he was in the final stretch of applying fertilizer to his southwestern Iowa soils last week.

“We run a very different program from most people, running all liquid except for fertilizer-grade ammonium sulfate (AMS),” Martin said. “We started applying fertilizer back in March.”

Despite extremely tight crop margins, Martin basically stuck with his normal fertilizer program for his corn acres. He did make small adjustments to his fertilizer plan for financial and efficiency needs, he said.

In past years, however, he did make more drastic changes to his fertilizer application procedures. For instance, he decided to stop applying micronutrients except for some zinc in his starter fertilizer.

One thing Martin has not altered is when he purchases his fertilizer. For this year’s crop, he pre-paid for his fertilizer at the end of December 2016, which is when he normally buys his nutrients, he said.

Retail fertilizers are lower compared to a year earlier. Three of the eight major fertilizers are still double-digits lower.

10-34-0 is 21% lower from a year ago, anhydrous is 14% less expensive and UAN32 is 11% lower. DAP, urea and UAN28 are all 9% less expensive…