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Chemical Week Magazine :: Cover Story

U.K. Focus: Boom Time for Potash

3:33 PM MDT | August 22, 2011 | Ian Young

The U.K. fertilizer industry is benefiting from high international prices for all types of fertilizer, boosted by soaring agricultural demand particularly in emerging markets. Potash forms an important part of the U.K. fertilizer sector, based on high-quality deposits in the northeast of England, and this segment is poised to grow. Cleveland Potash (Saltburn by the Sea), the U.K.’s only potash miner, is planning to expand and the company could be joined soon by a second player, Sirius Minerals (London). Each firm is targeting mainly polyhalite, a mineral salt that is a valuable source of potassium sulfate (K2SO4) and can be used as a specialty fertilizer. Polyhalite trades at a premium to conventional potash or potassium chloride (KCl). The U.K. government has identified the establishment of a polyhalite mining industry as a potential creator of wealth and jobs, and it is providing financial support to the Cleveland Potash initiative....

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