The Price of KCl for Water Softeners

Why has the price (Subject) risen so much over the last 4-5 years? At one time I heard there was a shortage in Alaska. What's the scoop?
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I recall reading that potassium is a key ingredient in a more lucrative process... maybe it was ethanol.
W. eWatson wrote:

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I was considering changing but it was $27 for 40lbs at HD. Looks like I'm on the salt for awhile. But even at that price I'd only pay $200 - $300 (?) a year anyway.
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Our local Costco has KCl @ $12.99 a 40lb bag.
Master Betty wrote:

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justalurker . wrote:

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Where KCI is $27/40lbs. :-) Austin.
I remember pricing it awhile back and it was somewhere in the low teens.
Actually, $300 unless I run a hose back for my pool. I think I'm just going to run the hose to the backyard and forget it and leave the salt. That's too much.
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K (potash) is a key component of fertilizer. My understanding was that agricultural demand caused China to withhold exports for internal use, which in turn drove prices up around the world.
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IIRC almost all the KCl is mined in Canada by North American Salt and put on the market under a variety of names.
Robert Neville wrote:

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Well, not all, but certainly the most. Russia/Belarus is apparently a close second.
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Robert Neville wrote:

Saskatchewan has HUGE Potash mine. Big exporter.
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That's it... North American Salt.
Tony Hwang wrote:

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