Michigan Potash plans to break ground in coming months on a billion-dollar processing plant

A leading developer of the Michigan Potash & Salt Company says having a domestic fertilizer supply can’t come soon enough as America’s dependence on global suppliers remains in upheaval.

“We won’t have to worry about the reliance so much from foreign entities.”

VP of potash and market development Ward Forquer tells Brownfield the central Michigan mines were operated until the ‘80s when Mosaic closed them in favor of Canadian facilities that produced 10 times more product.

Forquer says today that supply is also under threat of rail strikes, which could make a tight fertilizer situation even worse.

“And if that happens, that too will make it even tougher to get the fertilizer we need for this upcoming spring season,” he says.

Since 2000, the company has been undergoing the permitting process to restart operations and in the next 60 days, he expects construction to finally start on the 10 acre, $1.1 billion-dollar processing facility.

Forquer says USDA’s recent announcement to support American-made fertilizer along with new infrastructure funding should also help move the project along.  It’s expected to produce 650,000 tons of potash annually and be completed in about three years.

The U.S. imports over 90 percent of its potash consumption, mainly from Canada, Russia, and Belarus.

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