FinancialBuzz.com News Commentary
NEW YORK, March 27, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Potash is an essential nutrient for plants, particularly in the growth and development of their roots. It is a naturally occurring mineral that contains potassium in water-soluble form, and it is commonly used in the agriculture industry as a fertilizer. Potash plays a crucial role in enhancing crop yield and quality, which has made it an essential component of modern agriculture. Potassium also contributes to the overall health of the plant by strengthening its immune system and improving its resistance to diseases and pests. The future market potential for potash is promising, particularly as the global population continues to grow and demand for food increases. And, according to data provided by Industry Research Biz, the global potash market size was valued at USD 26.1 Billion in 2022 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 2.54% during the forecast period, reaching USD 30.4 Billion by 2028. Sage Potash Corp. (TSX-V: SAGE), FMC Corporation (NYSE: FMC), CVR Partners, LP (NYSE: UAN), The Mosaic Company (NYSE: MOS), Hawkins, Inc. (NASDAQ: HWKN)
Potash is primarily mined from underground deposits using conventional mining methods such as solution mining and conventional underground mining. Solution mining involves injecting hot water into underground deposits to dissolve potash, which is then pumped to the surface for processing. Potash solution mining is ideal when ore is found more than 1,000 meters below ground level and when dealing with sedimentary rock. In those circumstances, the depth and rock type make conventional mining risky. In addition, constructing and starting up a solution mine typically takes less time and investment. The process requires less manpower, less infrastructure and the structures needed can be built more quickly than those used in conventional mining operations.
Sage Potash Corp. (TSX-V: SAGE) just announced breaking news that, "its ongoing partnership with RESPEC LLC. ("RESPEC"), a best-in-class global engineering firm specializing in integrated technology solutions for mining, energy, infrastructure, water and natural resources. As leaders in potash solution mining consulting and engineering, RESPEC has successfully executed numerous projects worldwide and consulted for some of the largest potash producers including Rio Tinto, North Atlantic Potash, Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan (PCS) (now Nutrien), CanPacific, Sennen Resources and others.
Beginning in January 2022, RESPEC was engaged by Sage Potash to reinitiate engineering preparations to include the planning, design and execution of a Phase 1 Drill Hole Program and the preparation of a Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) toward the development of a pilot potash production facility. RESPEC will also be completing the corresponding permit applications for the Sage Plains project.
RESPEC Phase One Program consists of a step-out geological hole, the Sage 1 Well, located 700m from the Johnson 1 Well, that could double as a cavern development test well. A water brine supply well and a disposal well will be completed as part of the program. With these results, RESPEC will continue with the preparation of a PEA technical report for the Sage Plain Potash project (the "project") located near the town of Monticello, Utah in the Paradox Basin - potentially the largest undeveloped potash deposit in the United States.
Potash is extracted using either traditional underground mining or solution mining methods. Solution mining utilizes water or brine (solvent) to dissolve soluble minerals such as potash, magnesium or other salts. Wells are drilled down to the salt deposits, and the solvent is injected into the ore body to dissolve it. The solution is then pumped to the surface, and the minerals are recovered through evaporation and recrystallization of the potash salts (KCL). When viable, solution mining is an attractive extraction method as it offers many advantages, including lower CAPEX, less surface and environmental impacts, scalability and more rapid development of the deposit.
The Sage Plain deposit is well-suited for solution mining due to its optimal formation temperature of 68°C (154°F) and high purity. At this temperature, KCL is readily soluble, boosting energy efficiency and lowering operating costs.
'We continue to foster a great working relationship with the RESPEC team as a trusted partner in the planning of our pilot-scaled potash production test,' commented Sage's CEO Peter Hogendoorn. 'RESPEC has done a terrific job for Sage and have demonstrated valuable expertise in project management and development, engineering design work, geoscience and integrated technology solutions for our industry.'
The Sage Plain Potash project comprises over 83,000 acres of State and Private Mineral Leases and BLM Prospecting Permits in San Juan County, Utah, USA."
FMC Corporation (NYSE: FMC) announced on March 14th, a three-year, $1.5 million investment in support of Generation Unlimited's Engaging Kenyan Youth in Agriculture and Nutrition (EKYAN) program. The program will prepare youth for employment opportunities in agribusiness and improve the economic livelihoods of smallholder farmers across the country. "We are keenly aware of the food crisis devastating countries throughout Africa and the globe. Investments in youth and agriculture are necessary to strengthen agri-food systems, increase global food security and bring long-term economic stability to the region," said Mark Douglas, FMC president and CEO. "FMC is proud to be the first major corporate partner to support GenU's EKYAN program. We're excited to contribute to their work to prepare young people for a future in agriculture and make a meaningful difference in the lives of Kenyan farmers, and ultimately, the health and wellbeing of people throughout Africa."
CVR Partners, LP (NYSE: UAN), a manufacturer of ammonia and urea ammonium nitrate ("UAN") solution fertilizer products, announced on February 21st, net income of $95 million, or $9.02 per common unit, on net sales of $212 million for the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to net income of $61 million, or $5.76 per common unit, on net sales of $189 million for the fourth quarter of 2021. EBITDA was $122 million for the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to EBITDA of $93 million for the fourth quarter of 2021. "CVR Partners reported strong results for the full-year 2022 despite planned turnarounds at both nitrogen fertilizer production facilities," said Mark Pytosh, Chief Executive Officer of CVR Partners' general partner. "After the successful completion of the turnarounds, we have achieved record monthly production rates at both facilities. "Grain prices are near 10-year highs and planted corn acres are expected to increase by 3 percent to 5 percent for the spring 2023 planting season, driving strong demand for nitrogen fertilizer," Pytosh said. "With no planned turnarounds until fall 2024 and the strengthening of our balance sheet completed earlier in 2022, the Partnership will continue to focus on maintaining financial flexibility and generating free cash flow."
The Mosaic Company (NYSE: MOS) through its subsidiaries, produces and markets concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients in North America and internationally. Mosaic's North America Business includes potash and phosphate facilities located in the U.S., Canada and Peru. The integrated business features seven potash and phosphate mining facilities primarily located in Saskatchewan, Florida and Peru, along with five phosphate concentrates sites in Louisiana and Florida. Our products account for 73% and 40% of North America's phosphate and potash annual production, respectively. The Company claims, "We mine phosphate in Central Florida and Peru, and potash in Saskatchewan and New Mexico. With those minerals, we produce high-quality fertilizers and animal feed, then market and deliver our finished products-about half to customers in North America, and half to customers around the world, including those in all key agricultural regions."
Hawkins, Inc. (NASDAQ: HWKN) blends, manufactures, and distributes chemicals and other specialty ingredients in the United States and internationally. It operates through three segments: Industrial, Water Treatment, and Health and Nutrition. The Industrial segment offers industrial chemicals, products, and services to agriculture, chemical processing, electronics, energy, food, pharmaceutical, and plating industries. This segment primarily provides acids, alkalis, and food-grade and pharmaceutical salts and ingredients. It also receives, stores, and distributes various chemicals, such as liquid caustic soda, sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid, urea, phosphoric acid, aqua ammonia, and potassium hydroxide. Back in October 10th, 2022 the company announced, that it has extended the footprint of its Water Treatment Group into Delaware. With this new location, Hawkins now has 39 Water Treatment facilities in 23 states. "We have aggressively grown the footprint of our water treatment group over the last three years with multiple acquisitions and new greenfield locations," said Patrick H. Hawkins, Chief Executive Officer and President. "The organic and expansion growth contributed to topline water treatment group revenue growth of 34% in fiscal 2022 and a 15% compounded annual growth rate over the last three years. We expect to continue to expand this business profitably in future years through organic growth as well as acquisitions."
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