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The Sprouting Market for Manganese Fertilizers in Brazil

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The Sprouting Market for Manganese Fertilizers in Brazil

The Sprouting Market for Manganese Fertilizers in Brazil

Manganese fertilizer infographic presented by: Cancana

Manganese is primarily known for its uses in steel production, which makes up about 90% of the metal’s demand. However, it is less known for its important uses in batteries and particularly fertilizers.

Manganese is an essential micronutrient that is needed for plant and animal life. While it is needed in lesser amounts than the major fertilizer elements (N, P, K), the metal is essential for healthy growth of plants. There is no substitute for manganese in crops as it is needed chemically for photosynthesis.

Manganese is sufficient in most soils to supply crop needs, but may be deficient in dry conditions, sandy soils, high organic matter soils (especially peat and muck), and soils with high pH.

As the world’s largest net agricultural supplier, Brazil is the world’s breadbasket and agribusiness makes up almost a quarter of the country’s GDP.

Brazil, The World’s Breadbasket

Brazil produces 30% of the world’s soybeans and is also the crop’s #1 exporter with 41% of all shipments. Growth in soybean production is not stopping, and it continues to expand by 14.1% per year in Amazonian states, covering over eight million hectares.

However, there is a major problem for these farmers. This soil tends to be low in manganese micronutrients. Balanced plant nutrition with micronutrients can increase soybean yield by approximately 30%, yet manganese is the most common deficiency noted in soybean production in Brazil. Without it, farmers cannot maximize crop yield or revenues.

Purity and Grade

Not just any type of manganese will do. It has to be both high-purity and high-grade. Crops are eaten directly or indirectly by humans, so manganese must not have significant levels of heavy metals such as arsenic, cadmium, mercury, lead, or chromium. Brazil has specific regulations on the level of contaminants allowed, and therefore high-purity manganese is needed.

Manganese also has to be high-grade. Many fertilizer and feed applications call for high-grade ores with a minimum grade of 48%. As a result, more than a 30% premium is paid for high-grade, high-purity manganese ore.

Mato Grosso

Of particular interest is Mato Grosso, which uses more manganese than any other state in Brazil. This state is expected to account for 43.7% of the additional fertilizer and feed demand of manganese over the coming years, and high-grade sources of ore in this area will be particularly strategic.

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Mining

Charted: The Value Gap Between the Gold Price and Gold Miners

While the price of gold has reached new record highs in 2024, gold mining stocks are still far from their 2011 peaks.

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Line chart comparing gold price and gold mining stocks since 2000.

The Value Gap Between the Gold Price and Gold Miners

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on Apple or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Although the price of gold has reached new record highs in 2024, gold miners are still far from their 2011 peaks.

In this graphic, we illustrate the evolution of gold prices since 2000 compared to the NYSE Arca Gold BUGS Index (HUI), which consists of the largest and most widely held public gold production companies. The data was compiled by Incrementum AG.

Mining Stocks Lag Far Behind

In April 2024, gold reached a new record high as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell signaled policymakers may delay interest rate cuts until clearer signs of declining inflation materialize.

Additionally, with elections occurring in more than 60 countries in 2024 and ongoing conflicts in Ukraine and Gaza, central banks are continuing to buy gold to strengthen their reserves, creating momentum for the metal.

Traditionally known as a hedge against inflation and a safe haven during times of political and economic uncertainty, gold has climbed over 11% so far this year.

According to Business Insider, gold miners experienced their best performance in a year in March 2024. During that month, the gold mining sector outperformed all other U.S. industries, surpassing even the performance of semiconductor stocks.

Still, physical gold has outperformed shares of gold-mining companies over the past three years by one of the largest margins in decades.

YearGold PriceNYSE Arca Gold BUGS Index (HUI)
2023$2,062.92$243.31
2022$1,824.32$229.75
2021$1,828.60$258.87
2020$1,895.10$299.64
2019$1,523.00$241.94
2018$1,281.65$160.58
2017$1,296.50$192.31
2016$1,151.70$182.31
2015$1,060.20$111.18
2014$1,199.25$164.03
2013$1,201.50$197.70
2012$1,664.00$444.22
2011$1,574.50$498.73
2010$1,410.25$573.32
2009$1,104.00$429.91
2008$865.00$302.41
2007$836.50$409.37
2006$635.70$338.24
2005$513.00$276.90
2004$438.00$215.33
2003$417.25$242.93
2002$342.75$145.12
2001$276.50$65.20
2000$272.65$40.97

Among the largest companies on the NYSE Arca Gold BUGS Index, Colorado-based Newmont has experienced a 24% drop in its share price over the past year. Similarly, Canadian Barrick Gold also saw a decline of 6.5% over the past 12 months.

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