Combine harvesting: How much does it cost?

The wet weather has left many people under pressure to get tillage crops cut around the country, particularly in the midlands where rain showers have prevented any significant drying.

Some farmers may be calling on their local contractors as a result. So, how much are contractors charging to cut cereal crops?

Charge-out rates

In this short article, we provide a glimpse of the prices (charge-out rates) being touted around the country. These figures – it must be stressed – are simply those that were observed at the time of writing.

For starters, the lowest price quoted to AgriLand was €45/ac (including VAT).

Another price we came across included haulage (within the local area) for an all-in price of €70/ac (including VAT).

However, €50/ac (including VAT) looks to be a reasonably standard charge for combining; €55/ac (plus VAT) was the highest price quoted.

It should be noted, of course, that prices will vary – depending on the acreage to be cut. Contractors will levy separate charges to haul the crop.

Some contractors might provide trailers, for no extra charge, but only in instances where the farmer provides the tractor and driver.

FCI rates

Aside, the FCI (Association of Farm and Forestry Contractors in Ireland) has released guide rates for 2019.

Therein, the ‘guide’ charge-out rate for combining (cereals or oilseed rape) is pegged at €52/ac (plus VAT). Where chopping is needed, this price rises to €58/ac (plus VAT).

The FCI’s ‘guide’ rate for hauling grain is listed at €5/t (plus VAT) – up to 15km.