Anglo American, a mining company, is seeking partners in the Middle East and Africa for supply and distribution deals related to its fertiliser project in northeast England.
The Woodsmith Mine
The Woodsmith mine, which experienced a $1.7 billion writedown in February, is home to the world’s largest known deposit of polyhalite, a mineral containing potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulphur. Anglo American is marketing the mineral as POLY4.
Anglo American believes that polyhalite can improve crop yields by 3% to 5%. Tom McCulley, CEO of Anglo’s Crop Nutrients division, mentioned that the rising global population, concerns about climate change, and extreme weather conditions impacting arable land are factors that will drive demand for the fertiliser. The company aims to provide farmers with an organic and sustainable alternative.
Supply and Distribution Agreements
Anglo American has already signed supply and distribution agreements with five companies, including Archer-Daniels-Midland Co, BayWa, and the Indian Farm Forestry Development Cooperative (IFFCO). The mining company is now looking for additional partners in the Middle East and Africa.
Low Carbon Fertiliser Programme
Anglo American is also collaborating with Britain’s biggest retailer, Tesco, as part of a low carbon fertiliser programme.
Woodsmith Mine Details
The total cost of the mine is estimated to be around $9 billion. Anglo American aims to produce approximately 5 million tonnes of polyhalite annually in the first three years, with a capacity of 13 million tonnes for the entire 40-year lifespan of the mine.
BHP Group, the world’s largest mining company, is also entering the potash fertiliser market with its Jansen project in Canada. Production at the Jansen project is expected to begin in late 2026.