Agricultural sprayer in the fieldA recent estimate from the U.S. Fertilizer Institute says the U.S. is currently in supply of just 50% of the fertilizer products farmers will need this planting season. As many farmers held off purchases of inputs last December in hopes of lower prices, the supply backlog extends even beyond the already-challenging supply chain concerns. The Fertilizer Institute says now is the time for farmers to lean on agronomists and other resources that can help them be as efficient with products as possible.

The 4R stewardship principles (right source, right rate, right time, right place) remain especially potent with this year’s situation, as it promotes precision and efficiency with fertilizer application. Fertilizer prices are also a main issue, ramping up some 300% higher than they were in 2020. The potential Canadian Pacific railway strike in Canada and the Russian invasion of Ukraine are two major factors contributing to continued fertilizer challenges in the U.S.

Read more on fertilizer supplies and 4R application here.