Dwayne Dahl: Potash 2.0 – Disrupting Potash Production in Saskatchewan

Potash is an important resource for humanity. It is one of the 3 key nutrients for plants- along with nitrogen and phosphate. It strengthens plants, helps with the uptake of other nutrients, improves taste, and increases resistance to pests and disease. World population rise also strengthens the demand for potash.

World organizations show us that most of the future growth in food will come from fertilizers- with potash in the majority. The return of the demand for biofuels and ethanol, which use potash, are also increasing the need. A trending transition away from a starchy diet and into more protein is another factor- as a large amount of plants are needed to feed protein-rich animals.

Dwayne Dahl has been in the potash space for 25 years- encompassing all aspects of the potash sales process. He says there has been a hit to the industry with the tonnage and price both down- but he’s optimistic about a future rise along with demand. A recent merger of (POT) and (AGU) shows that the industry is in flux. Any consolidation of this sort could create opportunities- as customers will seek additional potash sources to reduce dependency on the small group of current suppliers.

Dahl gives details on a company that is creating an entirely new way of potash production, set to disrupt the industry. They are using methods such as vertical integration, product presales, scalability of facilities to meet presold demand, and a dramatic reduction of environmental and safety issues. They’ve eliminated fresh water use, as well as underground mines, brine ponds, and tailing piles. Low production costs will also make them very viable in the future.

Talking Points From This Week’s Episode:

• One of the biggest risks in the potash industry is the uncertainty of future sales.
• Saskatchewan encompasses the vast majority of the world’s recoverable potash resources.
• Saskatchewan has a resource-friendly government with reasonable royalties.
• Fertilizer sector pundits see the (POT – AGU) merger as a defensive mechinism from takeover attempts

Mr. Dwayne Dahl, CPA, CA, served as Senior Vice President of Finance and Treasurer of Canpotex Limited until January 19, 2016 and served as its Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Vice President of Finance. Mr. Dahl has 25 years of experience in the potash and fertilizer industry through his participation in increasingly senior positions at Canpotex Limited. During his tenure at Canpotex, the potash marketing and logistics export company formed by the Saskatchewan potash producers, he served as Director of all of its marketing, ocean transportation, terminaling, railcar and leasing subsidiaries. During his time at Canpotex, he was directly involved in the managing the vision of growing Canpotex’s sales of potash. Prior to joining Canpotex, Mr. Dahl was actively engaged as a farmer, business owner and principal in the Chartered Accountant firm, Androsoff and Dahl. He has been Director of Gensource Potash Corporation since August 22, 2016. During his business career, Mr. Dahl is active in many community, business and professional activities. His current commitments include acting as a Director of the Saskatoon Club, the Dean’s Circle of the Edwards School of Business, University of Saskatchewan and a member of the discipline committee of the Saskatchewan Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants. His previous commitments have included board positions with the Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan and St. Paul’s Hospital where he also acted as committee chairman, President of the Saskatoon branch of the Treasury Management Association of Canada as well as serving on and chairing a number of committees of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Saskatchewan. He attended the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon where he earned degrees from the College of Commerce and the College of Arts and Science.