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Expect to pay more for custom farm machinery work this year

Agriculture.com Staff 04/14/2008 @ 7:22am

If you hire someone to till, plant, spray, harvest, store grain, or do any other type of custom machinery work on your farm, expect to pay significantly more for the 2008 crop year than you paid last year.

William Edwards, Iowa State University Extension farm management specialist, recently completed the school's annual survey of 185 farm operators, custom work providers and farm managers. He says the survey data indicate rates will increase about 10% over comparable rates a year ago.

That estimate is likely low, however. The survey was conducted in late winter when diesel fuel averaged $2.75 per gallon in Iowa. Since then, fuel costs have increased another 25 to 30%, which could add another 6 to 7% to the total cost of custom work, Edwards says.

He says about 17% of the respondents hire custom work, another 34% provide custom work, and 49% both hire and provide custom machine work.

If you hire someone to till, plant, spray, harvest, store grain, or do any other type of custom machinery work on your farm, expect to pay significantly more for the 2008 crop year than you paid last year.

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