Fertiliser is flying out of merchants and co-ops around the country as the weather proves ideal for farmers to get out and spread.
Price drops are also being experienced with CAN now trading as low as €470/t, down from over €600/t just six weeks ago. CAN plus sulphur is costing over the between €500/t and €510/t.
Farmers, however, are balking at urea and straight CAN due to the warm weather and it is compounds that are in demand, according to merchants.
Cut sward is costing, on average, between €650/t and €670/t while pasture sward is costing between €640/t and €660/t.
Cut sward and pasture sward can also be bought in urea-based form for around €10/t cheaper but is not advised in this weather. Sweet 18s and 18-6-12 are ranging in price from €660/t to €700/t.
One fertiliser importer told the Irish Farmers Journal that the use of compounds is reportedly very low among European farmers.
“There’s nothing like drought conditions to deplete the soil of those important nutrients. We could potentially see drought conditions for second cut and farmers should consider going out with either sulphur CAN or compounds. Potash will be particularly important for drought resistance if this dry spell continues,” he said.
Pat Ryan, managing director of Liffey Mills, said that there’s better value for money in fertiliser now than there has been in a long time.
“From a fodder point of view, whether it’s €20/t cheaper or €20/t dearer there’s no point looking at it in the bag. First cut has been good quality but it is light and pits are still very empty. The weather forecast now is looking good and you’d be fearful of another drought,” he said.