Milorganite by the (other) numbers

A place to discuss organic lawn care products and practices
Post Reply
Topic Author
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Jul 13, 2020 3:28 pm
Location: Aiken SC / Augusta GA area
Grass Type: Bermuda
Lawn Size: 6000
Mower: Honda rotary

Milorganite by the (other) numbers

Post by johnr »

Many of us use Milo organic fertilizer and we relate to numbers like 6-4-0. However, here are some other numbers of interest.

As you know the product is made by the Milwaukee Metro Sewerage District. They sell 46,000 tons per year, for $10,000,000 of revenue to them (about $217 revenue per ton). The revenue represents 10% of their budget, much smaller than I would have thought.

Equating the revenue they receive to a 32 pound bag we buy, they receive about $3.50 per bag. The local box store is selling it today for $16 in our area.

So the difference between the $16 we pay and the $3.50 they receive is “middleman” costs/profit including handling, transportation, retail markups, etc.,etc. However, in reality the $3.50 per bag calculation is on the low side since a portion of the Sewage District sales are to the wholesale bulk markets of ag and golf course, which weighs down the average revenue per bag mentioned above. If we eliminate an estimate for this low revenue/ton sales to the bulk ag/golf course markets, it might raise the retail revenue to say $6 or $7 a bag, but it still means there is a significant effort (cost/profit/transportation) to get this stuff to us.

Since we use so much of this stuff I thought you might find this interesting...the story behind the story.

Ya, I know, about as interesting as watching grass grow… but that's what we do, right. :nod:

TLF Supporter
Posts: 121
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2020 5:40 pm
Location: Green Bay Wisconsin
Grass Type: Cool season, random mix
Lawn Size: 25,000sq ft.
Mower: 46" Craftsman YT4100

Re: Milorganite by the (other) numbers

Post by BobLovesGrass »

I am in Wisconsin and Stein's garden and Gifts runs a few sales a year at 5 for $30, regular price being I think $7.99.
Other chains in the area like Fleet Farm and Menards are $8-9, Tractor Supply is like $12-13

At least within the Wisconsin based chains it seems I benefit from the short transportation distance.

Posts: 4945
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:27 am
Location: CT (Zone 6B)
Grass Type: KBG, TTTF, TTPR, FF-diff mixes
Lawn Size: 15K
Mower: Toro 22", MTD 21", Fiskars 18"

Re: Milorganite by the (other) numbers

Post by Green »

Thanks for the lowdown. I've known for a while that the $16 (now $16.50 at Ace) we pay on the East Coast for an ever shrinking bag had to do with transportation distance. But it's nice to see the numbers itemized. Thanks.
Front: Northern mix - mostly TTTF, KBG, TTPR. Back: Firecracker and Bullseye TTTF with America, Rugby 2, Bewitched KBG. Upper Side: Mostly TTPR, KBG. Lower Side: similar to front. Low-input: TF/FF, KBG, PR. Always seeding somewhere or fighting Triv.

Post Reply