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Rising Costs Affect Fertiliser Prices

9 December 2004

Rising Costs Affect Fertiliser Prices

Now that spring fertiliser programmes are complete, Ballance Agri-Nutrients is adjusting its pricing as of 8 December to bring it in line with significantly increased costs.

Ballance Chief Executive Larry Bilodeau says the co-operative has held off prices increases as long as possible, enabling farmers to complete their spring fertiliser applications.

“We indicated at our annual meeting in September that price rises were inevitable, and are pleased we have been able to hold off on making those adjustments as long as we have. It is also pleasing to once more demonstrate the benefit to Ballance shareholders of our urea manufacturing plant at Kapuni. With significantly increased international urea prices, our local urea production enables us to offset a proportion of this increase.”

Prices increases per tonne are: urea – $89 to $479; potash – $49 to $485; DAP – $59 to $533; superten – $3 to $168.

“These changes have to be considered in the context of two years of price decreases. We have consistently lowered prices when able to give our shareholders/customers the immediate savings. We have managed to resist passing on increased costs over the past six months due to a strong currency. Although some of these price increases are significant, they would have been greater were it not for the continued strength of the kiwi dollar

“These prices compare very favourably with international fertiliser prices. Ballance is conscious of the need to provide farmers a high standard of service through quality fertiliser, specialist nutrient management advice, and support with fertiliser decision making as well as competitive pricing.”

Mr Bilodeau says a combination of factors have driven up costs. These include the cost of shipping raw materials to New Zealand trebling in 18 months, rising international petroleum prices, and an increased demand internationally for some fertiliser products including urea and DAP.

ENDS

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