Phosphate rock price November 2023 and outlook (see chart below)
- North America:US$0.16/KG, unchanged
- Africa:US$0.21/KG, 5% up
- Northeast Asia:US$0.25/KG, 4.2% up
- South America:US$0.34/KG, 3% up
- India:US$0.25/KG, unchanged
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Phosphate rock price index
This post is a summary of the Phosphate rock price developments. The price developments of Phosphate rock are expressed in US$ prices converted FX rates applicable at the time when the price was valid. Phosphate rock price index developments are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.
The outlook for Phosphate rock prices, on the second tab, is generated from different inputs including:
- Very recent price developments of immediate cost drivers of Phosphate rock prices
- Recent price developments of underlying feedstocks which drive the price of Phosphate rock
- Market futures for both cost drives and feedstocks ofPhosphate rock prices
- Adjustment of current supply/demand imbalances in the Phosphate rock market
- Longer term trends in likely demand conditions
Further information on the Phosphate rock price chart
What is rock phospate
Rock phosphate is a naturally occurring mineral deposit that is rich in phosphate minerals. It is formed from ancient marine sediments that have been slowly deposited and compressed over millions of years. Rock phosphate typically contains high levels of phosphorus, along with other minerals such as calcium and trace elements like selenium and strontium.
Rock phosphate is commonly used as a source of phosphorus in fertilizers and is often used to improve the fertility of agricultural soils. It can be used directly as a fertilizer, or it can be processed into various forms such as single superphosphate (SSP), triple superphosphate (TSP), or other phosphorus fertilizers.
Rock phosphate deposits are found in many parts of the world, with the largest reserves located in North Africa, the Middle East, and the United States. The quality of rock phosphate can vary depending on the specific location and geological conditions where it is found, and different types of rock phosphate may have varying levels of phosphorus content and other mineral impurities.
How is rock phosphate produced
Rock phosphate is a naturally occurring mineral deposit that is typically mined from underground deposits. The exact process of production can vary depending on the specific location and geological conditions of the deposit, but generally involves the following steps:
Geologists identify potential rock phosphate deposits through geological surveys, aerial imaging, and other methods.
Once a deposit has been identified, it is typically mined using conventional open-pit or underground mining techniques. The ore is extracted from the ground using heavy equipment and transported to the processing plant.
The mined rock phosphate ore is then processed through a beneficiation process to separate the phosphate mineral from other minerals and impurities. This can involve various methods such as washing, flotation, or magnetic separation.
Production of phosphoric acid
The purified phosphate ore is then used to produce phosphoric acid, which is a key ingredient in the production of fertilizers. This is typically done through a process called wet acid digestion, which involves reacting the phosphate rock with sulfuric acid.
Production of phosphate fertilizers
The resulting phosphoric acid is then used to produce a variety of phosphate fertilizers, such as single superphosphate (SSP), triple superphosphate (TSP), or diammonium phosphate (DAP).
The process of producing rock phosphate can be resource-intensive and energy-consuming, and can also generate waste materials and byproducts that need to be managed appropriately. Sustainable mining and processing practices are increasingly being adopted in the industry to reduce the environmental impact of rock phosphate production.
How big is the rock phosphate market
The global rock phosphate market is a significant part of the overall phosphate fertilizer industry. The market size of rock phosphate is influenced by a number of factors, including supply and demand dynamics, global economic conditions, and agricultural trends.
According to a report by Market Insights Reports, the global rock phosphate market size was valued at USD 3.8 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 4.6 billion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.7% from 2021 to 2027. The report cites increasing demand for food due to population growth, along with the need for sustainable agriculture practices as key drivers of growth in the rock phosphate market.
Overall, the global rock phosphate market is expected to continue to grow in the coming years, driven by the need for food production and the increasing adoption of sustainable agricultural practices.
According to https://oec.world/ :
Calcium Phosphates are the world’s 613th most traded product.
Which countries produce the most rock phosphate
The global production of rock phosphate is dominated by a few countries, with the top producers accounting for the majority of the world’s supply. According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the top producers of rock phosphate in 2020 were:
- Morocco: 27.8 million metric tons
- China: 9.5 million metric tons
- Russia: 7.5 million metric tons
- Jordan: 5.5 million metric tons
- Tunisia: 3.5 million metric tons
Other significant producers of rock phosphate include the United States, Egypt, Brazil, and Peru.
Morocco is by far the largest producer of rock phosphate in the world, accounting for nearly 75% of global production. The country’s phosphate reserves are primarily located in the Western Sahara region, and it is the leading exporter of phosphate rock to countries around the world. China is the second-largest producer of rock phosphate, with most of its production being used for domestic consumption.
The production of rock phosphate is influenced by a variety of factors, including global demand for fertilizers, market prices, and the availability of resources and infrastructure for mining and processing. The top producers of rock phosphate are expected to continue to dominate the market in the coming years, with growing demand for food and increasing adoption of sustainable agricultural practices driving the need for phosphate fertilizers.
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