Feb 28, 2023Fertilizer group seeks ‘regulatory certainty’ from Congress
Corey Rosenbusch, president and CEO of The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) testified Feb. 28 at the House Committee on Agriculture hearing, “Uncertainty, Inflation, Regulations: Challenges for American Agriculture.”
“Fertilizer is an essential tool for farmers to achieve the yields necessary to feed our growing world,” Rosenbusch said during the hearing. “We appreciate the opportunity to shed light on current market dynamics and offer solutions to the pressures currently facing the U.S. agricultural sector.
“As always, the fertilizer industry is committed to ensuring adequate supply to meet farmer demand for the nutrients that are so essential to growing healthy and abundant crops,” he said.
Rosenbusch focused much of his testimony on the fact that fertilizer is a globally traded commodity subject to international pressures and geopolitical events.
“Domestic production of fertilizer accounts for only 7% of global production and 90% of all fertilizer usage happens outside of the United States,” he said. “Geopolitical events have been the biggest disrupter to fertilizer markets in recent years.”
Those events include sanctions on Belarus, which supplies 20% of the world’s potash supply. China, which is a major exporter of fertilizers, last year imposed restrictions on fertilizer exports. Russia, which has historically provided 20% of global fertilizer supplies as the world’s largest fertilizer exporter.
Rosenbusch offered solutions and items Congress could act on to improve domestic production and supply.
“While Congress cannot control Russia and China, there are a number of areas where policy could have a positive impact on the agricultural sector,” Rosenbusch said. “Regulatory certainty is perhaps the most significant area Congress could help.”
Rosenbusch also outlined steps that would alleviate problems, from listing potash and phosphate as critical minerals, enabling energy policies that support delayed fertilizer projects, and focusing on USDA conservation programs that empower agronomists and certified crop advisers.