Report highlights gross margin pressure

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Yagro used Cereals to publish 2024 Chemical and Fertiliser Review. It’s extended the scope of its annual review to give greater detail on inputs, including trends over time. According to the company, it will allow farmers to benchmark their decisions as well as performance.

A key takeaway is the significant hike in input costs for 2023, winter wheat production costs jumped by 50% from the previous season to £94/t. This contributed to a 58% fall in winter wheat gross margins, although 2022 was a ‘good year’ with margins above those for the previous six years.

Key behind the jump in production costs was the stratospheric rise in fertiliser prices. Geopolitical events impacted most input prices but with the closure of fertiliser plants nitrogen price rises outstripped everything else.

The report highlights the typical fertiliser cost for winter wheat production in 2018 as £163.97/ha, for 2023 it was over £400/ha, nitrogen being valued at £1.21/kg. the report also highlights a swing to mixed fertiliser regimes, with many growers now using a balance of solid and liquid application.

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