June 25, 2015


US cold season led to lower sales of crop protection chemicals in 2014: Kline



As an extended cold season in the US delayed the country's 2014 planting season till late May last year, it also led to declining sales of crop protection chemicals, according to market intelligence, Kline. This, combined with low commodity prices, posed a difficult year for the crop protection chemicals industry.


Hence, sales slid by 0.9% from 2013, with net manufacturer's sales at a value of US$9.35 billion, Kline's report, titled "Crop Protection Manufacturers Report: A Strategic Market Analysis of the US Crop Protection Industry", stated.


Since the cold curbed disease and insect activities, demand for insecticides and fungicides fell. In fact, a combination of late plantings and dry conditions means that fungicides were not employed by a huge number of growers.


However, Joe Prochaska, a project manager at Kline's Agrochemicals / Specialty Pesticide Practice, attributed a slight increase in fungicide sales to demands in the Southeast and Northern Plain states where conditions were "warmer and wetter".


While sales of insecticides and fungicides were affected, seed treatments increased its market share by 25% over 2013. Worries over glyphosate-resistant weeds also gave rise to a need for pre-emergent herbicides.


As for agricultural commodities in 2014, prices fell in light of expectations of bigger yields and rising stockpiles including corn, soybeans and cotton. As a result, grower profits and sales of crop inputs (including crop protection) tapered along.


2014 had proven to be such a trying year that crop protection companies were prompted to announce actions that would alter the course of their business.


Arysta LifeScience and Chemtura AgroSolutions, for instance, will be sold to Platform Specialty Products (SPC) while Danish-based manufacturer Cheminova will be bought over by FMC.


60% of ChinaChem's ownership will be acquired by Adama which was formerly known as Makhteshim Agan.


Albaugh, LLC, the largest American-based formulator of off-patent crop protection products, had signed key partnerships with international manufacturers.

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