It’s a case of who blinks first in the fertiliser market at the moment, with huge numbers of farmers opting to stay out of the market in anticipation of further price falls in the coming weeks.
Purchasing groups around the country have been holding off getting quotes as fertiliser prices continue to drop on a weekly basis.
Merchants have been slow to drop prices until new product arrives in yards. An Irish Farmers Journal survey of beef farmer readers over the weekend found that over 70% haven’t purchased fertiliser yet for the 2023 season.
Farmers have instead opted to utilise slurry on their farms, with over 65% of farmers who responded to the survey saying they have spread slurry on their farm in spring 2023.
Among those who have purchased fertiliser, there has been a huge range in prices, with urea 46% N ranging in price from €655/t to €990/t delivered.
CAN 27% N ranged in price from €660/t to €950/t delivered, while cut and pasture sward ranged in price from €780/tonne to €950/t delivered.
The next three weeks is a critical time for fertiliser purchases on beef farms as fertiliser is lined up for first cut silage application at the end of March /beginning of April.