Maize Harvest & Fertiliser Planning
Maize Harvest 2022 is upon us already!
We have been out assessing a number of maize crops following the bank holiday weekend and have found the majority of crops to be ready for harvesting or very close to! Not only have kernels been 1/3 and ¼ milk line but dry matter in the stems have also been surprisingly low given the time of year.
Assessing crops will be crucial this year to avoid crops over-maturing and starch becoming less available, along with high dry matter crops which might suffer a lack of fermentation in the clamp.
For help assessing crops, please get in touch with us!
Fertiliser 2023 – time to buy already?!
As you might be aware, CF industries announced last week they will “temporarily” cease production of ammonia at their Billingham site.
The company anticipates they will be able to fulfil AN orders in the coming months, but this certainly sheds doubt on future production and the fulfilment of future orders. With Natural Gas prices nearly 5 times higher than this point last year, this will not only impact household bills, but also the production of fertiliser, most importantly ammonia.
Whilst there is the option to import urea and liquid AN product, this will likely come at an increased cost to farmers. The availability of imports is also in doubt after a number of EU fertiliser plants are also closing due to the high energy costs mentioned above. It is also likely we will see further plant closures as we progress into winter.
What does this mean for you?
In the short term, these impacts will take time to filter through to the markets and effect availability of product on-farm. However, with variable forage quality and quantity across farms, many will be reliant on increased concentrate usages through this winter with the hope of turning animals out to grass early next spring, resulting in squeezed margins.
However, a disrupted fertiliser supply chain could make life difficult through the 2023 grazing season. The other main consideration is the usage and availability of urea on farms. We noted earlier this year during the period directly after the Russian Invasion of Ukraine when urea was not available, milk production suffered when urea was removed from diets.
We suggest you obtain fertiliser prices for 2023 as soon as possible, if prices are sensible then we would recommend taking some coverage for 2023 already. The same goes for feed grade urea, provided that you are able to store it in a suitable condition, it would be beneficial to begin creating a stockpile of urea to use throughout the winter should availability become an issue.
For advice or to discuss fertiliser requirements, please get in touch!
Charlie Davies 07904 601104 firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura Cureton 07399 117257 email@example.com
Sam Kelly 07777 696080 firstname.lastname@example.org Office 01454 614624