Numlock News: November 19, 2021 • Arwen Even…

By Walt Hickey Have a great weekend! Urea If you’re bored with “the chip shortage” and “west coast port traffic” and other more conventional, dare I say vanilla supply chain difficulties, the hot new indie supply chain problem is Korean urea. Urea is one of those critical chemicals that entire societies run on without realizing it, as Korea is acutely aware of given they’re nearly out of it. It’s produced by coal usage, and since China’s short on coal and burning less of it, there’s less urea and prices are up. Urea is everywhere — not only does it make fertilizer, it’s added to diesel to cut emissions, and so pretty much the entire trucking system is reliant on it. No urea means no diesel, and no diesel means no deliveries of food, gasoline, and so on. Korea’s got

Read →