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Updated standard fertilizer costs for 2023-2024 season

Daya Will, Jef Aernouts

Fertilizer costs in 2023 were remarkably lower than those in 2022, so we adjusted the standard fertilizer cost prices in Farmdesk. Below is a brief overview of the changes.

The updates are based on calculations of current fertilizer prices over 2023.

N-containing fertilizer had an average cost in the 2022 growing season (March - August) of €78.52/100 kg, this compares with the average price of KAS in the 2023 growing season of €34.11/100 kg. This is a decrease in the cost price of KAS by 56.6%.

K-containing fertilizer had an average cost price of €71.52/100 kg in growing season 2022 (March - August), this compares with the average fertilizer price of Kali 60 in growing season 2023 of €64.38/100 kg. This is a decrease in the cost price of Kali 60 by 10%.

Updates in Farmdesk

In order to keep your economic figures up to date, we have performed a more detailed costing in Farmdesk for all crops in which the individual elements, being slurry and N- and K-containing fertilizers, are accurately depicted. The fertilizer costs consist, on the one hand, of the (contract) work for spreading slurry and, on the other hand, the purchase of fertilizer and its spreading.

This approach results in fertilizer prices for the common crops of grass, corn and beets:

  • For thecultivation of grass the new total fertilizer cost is €635 per hectare, of which €200 per hectare is for the application of slurry, €105 for the purchase of potassium, €260 for nitrogen and €70 for the application of fertilizer. With the absence of derogation, the attention to potassium will increase, therefore the requirement of K has been calculated to a minimum of 20 g/kg DS. This combined with a yield of 12 t DS/ha we arrive at a requirement of 240 kg K/ha.
  • In the maize crop the new full fertilizer cost is €286 per hectare. This includes €200 per hectare for the application of slurry and €45 for the purchase of potassium. The price for nitrogen application is €41, which does not include the cost of spreading since it assumes that the entire gift is applied at seeding.
  • For beets the new whole fertilizer cost is € 670 per hectare, of which € 200 per hectare is for the application of slurry, € 232 for the purchase of potassium, € 168 for nitrogen and € 70 for the application of fertilizer.

(Note 1: on pre-crop farms, we only assume fertilizer use. Note 2: for organic farms, we do not include fertilizer increases).

Getting started in Farmdesk

In Farmdesk, we use these fertilization costs in two places.

  1. When you add a new feedstock from your own crop, its cost will be automatically calculated based on fertilizer costs, among other factors. For example, for the new silo corn from 2023, the cost price will be lower this from 2022. Cultivation costs are therefore automatically adjusted for feedstuffs entered in Farmdesk after 01/06/2023. Cultivation costs will also be adjusted in historical feed lists.
  2. You can set your farm-specific crop costs yourself, see screenshots below. Note: if you had previously adjusted your cultivation costs, they will be recalculated according to the same calculation rules as above.
  3. In the cultivation & feed planner you can optimize a cultivation plan and associated feed plan to feed your animals year-round as cost-efficiently as possible. Fertilizer cost updates will help you make a more realistic plan.

About the authors

  • Daya Will

    Daya provides agricultural support in Farmdesk, both internally and externally. Based on her passion for agriculture, she guides dairy farmers, analyzes datasets, conducts hands-on research and evaluates user experiences.

  • Jef Aernouts

    Jef Aernouts is the manager of Farmdesk. With experience as a product developer, a PhD in Physics and a farming background, he is the connecting bridge between digital innovation and on-farm practice.

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