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CFE Combatting the Supply Chain

Dec 20, 2021

Global Glyphosate Gouge

It's plastered across farm news that glyphosate is in short supply for farmers in 2022. The soaring prices are a constant reminder, too.

“We’re already, on November 22, hearing about glyphosate prices at $60 a gallon," says Purdue University Professor of Weed Science, Dr. Bill Johnson, in a Hoosier Ag Today article. "Eighteen months ago, glyphosate prices were $10 a gallon. So, it’s increased by six-fold in just 18 months. We’re hearing that by the time we get to delivery next spring, it could be as high as $80 a gallon.”

This summer, Terry Aukes, CFE Agronomy Sales Manager, met with a North American manufacturing supplier to discuss 2022 strategies for weed control due to 2021 being difficult in itself.

"I was shocked to learn that the issues we are seeing today started back in 2018," says Terry. "Thinking back to that year, though, it started to make sense. In 2018 and 2019, the United States saw record amounts of prevent plant acres and chemical manufacturers took their foot off the gas due to this."

The herbicide supply issue only began to snowball from there. COVID-19's rise in 2020 shut down manufacturing plants. Numerous containers were stuck on ships for months during the Suez Canal fiasco. Ice storms in Texas caused weeks-long petrochemical shutdowns, causing production of jugs, lids, boxes and bulk containers to come to a halt.

"Everyone's first thought is that manufacturers are taking advantage of farmers with these high prices and that is simply not the case," Aukes says. "It's becoming clear that the global supply chain is the real culprit. Everything is upsidedown - from the shortage of truckers, to issues finding labor, to the bottlenecks at ports."

Agronomists at CFE are scanning the marketplace to find alternatives. In the past, glyphosate has been more economical and higher rates were used. Trimming rates in 2022 is going to be an option they look at recommending. Volunteer corn killer in a bean program with lower rates of Roundup® should be just as successful, as well as using one of the several products on the marketplace that have glyphosate in them, such as Halex® GT and Acuron® GT for corn, and Flexstar® GT for soybeans.

The team is also suggesting growers utilize full rates of preemergent herbicides instead of cutting rates. CFE's preemergents are in full supply and can be pre-paid at this time.

Perspective on the herbicide situation is needed in times like these. The global supply chain has put pressure on all chemistry across the market.

Today's crops still have far better returns on investment than they were a year ago - even with this higher priced chemistry.

It has become a full year process now; our team was already working in June of 2021 to secure supply for 2022. The distribution team had foresight and began preparing 2022's inventory as soon as they could.

Every day, CFE has boots on the ground internally to forecast and limit our customers' exposure to market volatility, and secure sufficient quantities of product.

Contact your CFE Agronomist to start your plan.

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