An American Farm Bureau economist says soaring fertilizer and other input costs may continue into next spring before they stabilize, posing a continuing challenge to the nation’s producers.
“Ammonia has increased over 210 percent, liquid nitrogen’s up 159 percent, urea’s up 155 percent, MAP has increased 125 percent, DAP is up over 100 percent, and potash has risen above 134 percent.”
AFB Economist Shelby Myers says many farmers anecdotally tell Farm Bureau that they’re paying over 300percent more, plus higher chemical, seed, labor, and other costs. What’s worse; “We expect some of these costs to linger into the spring, because the economy just has to rebalance itself out.”
And what’s behind soaring fertilizer costs? “Increased global demand, there’s the domestic production versus the import situation of whether it’s cheaper to produce locally or import some of those key nutrients, rising energy costs.”
Myers says getting rid of tariffs on imported fertilizer would help. “We’ve sent many letters to many departments of the administration to remove those because those are price increases that can be mitigated and avoided.”
Producers also have one eye on the new COVID variant, Omicron, now sweeping the country that could again slow the economy and cause new headaches for agriculture in the new year.