European farmers may face fertilizer shortages
Stopping natural gas supplies via Nord Stream could lead to new serious problems for the chemical industry and agriculture in Europe, reports the information and analytical service of Fertilizer Daily.
“Currently, about 70% of the existing nitrogen fertilizer production capacities in Europe are idle, and due to the ongoing rise in the price of natural gas, another 30% might be stopped as well. As a result, in the next couple of months, the supply of nitrogen fertilizers throughout Europe may fall to a minimum, leading to their total shortage and price increase,” the agency notes.
The output of other groups of mineral fertilizers is also expected to fall due to the high cost of natural gas, which is also used in the process of their production. The accumulated stocks of gas in Europe are not enough to provide its facilities and amount only to 80% of the target volume.
“Firstly, the level of their fulfillment varies from country to country, and secondly, autumn and winter can be very cold, causing accelerated pumping of natural gas from underground storage facilities,” Fertilizer Daily predicts. “In such conditions, European farmers might be left without mineral fertilizers at all or with their minimum reserves. Things may be similar with the production of plant protection products — it also needs natural gas, preferably cheap.”