The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is seeking additional economic data from industry on ammonium nitrate fertilizer. The agency is likely to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking for an ammonium nitrate registration program in Summer 2009 and issue a final rule in early 2010, according to the Agricultural Retailers Association. ARA has provided DHS information on AN fertilizer, but it would be helpful to obtain additional input from ARA members.
DHS is seeking answers to the following questions:
- How many farms use AN? According to the Census of Agriculture, about one million farms use chemical fertilizers. How many of these use AN? How much AN is used annually in the U.S.? How much of that is imported?
- After AN leaves the manufacturer, it goes to wholesalers/distributors to be packaged. About how many of these wholesalers/distributors are there? How is AN repackaged and sold to end-use consumers?
- From the wholesalers/distributors, AN is sold to retailers and ultimately to farmers. How many retailers of AN are there? How many retailers of AN mixtures?
- Do many farmers purchase directly from the wholesaler/distributors? How many?
- When a farmer orders AN, how often does he/she take delivery, store it onsite, and apply it on their own? How often does the wholesaler/distributor apply the product as part of the transaction? How often for certified applicators? Does the applicator need to be certified?
- According to the Census Bureau, about 3,200 fertilizer applicator businesses operate in the U.S. How many of these apply AN? Of all the AN applied to farms, how much is applied via these services vs. application by farmers themselves or distributors?
- AN ends up as the nitrogen component in several mixtures. Is there any way to quantify how that is distributed into the supply chain?
Please send your comments to Richard Gupton, ARA staff, e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or fax (202) 457-0825.