The war in Ukraine prompts many questions for U.S. farmers
Fertilizer prices reach an all-time high due to EU sanctions against Russia. The Bloomberg Green Markets Fertilizer Index jumped almost 10 percent on Friday.
Earlier this month, global giant Yara announced it would not source Russian supplies. The CEO says that he weighed a moral dilemma, knowing the move would contribute to food inflation.
A Bloomberg analyst says that it could take five years, at best, to replace volumes lost, by eliminating Russian raw materials.
The war in Ukraine is causing more questions than answers for U.S. farmers. American Farm Bureau’s Congressional Relations Director, Dave Salmonsen says that those questions will have to get answered sooner than later.
“How will the world respond with planting at a time when costs are high to put crops in the ground? How will that work out? And, of course, as the year goes on, we have no idea what our weather’s going to be and our yields, so definitely a lot of questions in the air... The longer this goes on, the greater the impacts-- the conflict in Ukraine, the greater the impact will be,” he states.
Ukraine’s government says that spring planting has begun in some areas, but not in full.
Yields are anyone’s guess.
Salmonsen says that fertilizer shortfalls are fueling higher input costs. That affects everyone, no matter if you grow corn, wheat, or soybeans.
Despite all the uncertainty, a Ukrainian ag consultancy is making predictions about wheat exports. APK says that Ukraine is likely to ship just 200,000 tons between now and June.
Before the invasion, the firm estimated Ukraine would ship 18.3 million tons of wheat for the marketing year. Most of that has already shipped.