Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas wish lists

With Christmas fast approaching, perhaps you are working on a wish list of new iron to add to your packages under the Christmas tree? With that in mind, and having read Craig Reeder's recent column in the Oregon Wheat Magazine, I thought I should share with you a revised publication from the University of Idaho.
When I receive calls about the cost of equipment and local leasing rates for different farming practices this is the only resource that I have to provide to growers that provides an analysis of farm machinery costs. With ongoing economic pressures farmers need to continue paying attention to managing their machinery resources, now more than ever. 
The longstanding trend of substituting financial capital for labor by adding more productive and higher capacity machinery has resulted in large amounts of capital being used annually to acquire and operate farm machinery. On today’s commercial farm, substantial components of both capital investment and annual production costs are machinery related. As a result, farmers must not overlook effective strategies to manage their machinery resources.

Effectively managing machinery resources requires having adequate answers on a continuing basis to the following questions:
  • What size of machinery is most economical? 
  • How much machinery is needed for a given acreage and/or crop mix?
  •  Should machinery be leased, rented, custom-hired, or purchased?
  • Should new or used machinery be purchased?
  • How long should machinery be kept before it is replaced?
A farmer needs to know machinery costs to deal effectively with these management questions. Yet, many farmers do not keep adequate records of machinery costs.The link below will take you to the full publication and tables for the publication which can help you answer some of the questions listed above:

PNW 346, Costs of Owning and Operating Farm Machinery in the Pacific Northwest, 2011

Happy Holidays, and best wishes in the coming year.

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