Scottish farmers have been promised more competitively-priced liquid fertilisers following the opening of a new 16,000-tonne mixing and storage plant at the Port of Dundee.
Until now Lincolnshire-based Omex Agriculture has been hauling its product, Nitroflo, to Scotland from Newcastle.
Managing director, Max Winkler said the £3 million facility was the company’s biggest-ever capital investment.
“Although we’ve been working with Scottish farmers for many years, this new facility will give them better access to liquid fertiliser and all their benefits,” he said.
“We have two tanks, each of 6,000-tonne capacity holding UAN and an ammonium sulphate liquid tank of 3,000 tonnes as well as a water tank, and this port allows us to bring in 10,000-tonne vessels so we can access global supplies from Russia, North America and Asia, whereas if you only have a small port facility you can only take in from the European market. That means we can have competitive pricing for Scottish farmers.”
Mr Winkler said the trend in the UK fertiliser market was going from solid to liquid, mainly because of the ease of handling, reduced wastage and the environmental and handling advantages it brings over solid fertiliser.
He said there had been a positive reaction from local farmers and word was spreading quickly as the company is using local hauliers Harry Lawson Transport.
The product will be sold through distributors and direct to farmers.
Forth Ports chief operating officer Stuart Wallace said Dundee was a strong regional port for the agricultural sector and it had handled solid fertiliser for a number of years.
He added: “We see liquid as a valuable addition in the supply chain to the agricultural sector in Tayside, Angus and the wider area. Already 12,000 tonnes has gone through the plant since it started in the spring.”