Silage contractor rates: How much are you paying…or charging?

Silage making is in full swing and the rain forecast for the weekend has brought the first real pressure point of the season.

AgriLand has undertaken a quick, timely round-up of prices; all of these rates (below) are based on a ‘short draw’.

The ‘full job’

Prices obtained in the midlands ranged between €100/ac and €120/ac (excluding VAT) to mow, rake, pick up, draw in and push up (on the pit).

A figure of €105/ac (excluding VAT) was noted in north Cork.

In the east of the country, a price of €110/ac (excluding VAT) was quoted in Co. Wicklow. Further south, €115/ac (excluding VAT) was noted in Co. Waterford.

€10/ac appears to be a standard charge for raking – across the country.

‘Wagon’ silage

A figure of €90/ac (excluding VAT) was obtained in Co. Laois; this is for mowing, picking up with a wagon and pushing up (in the pit).

FCI prices

These rates are broadly similar to those published by the FCI (Association of Farm & Forestry Contractors in Ireland) earlier this year.

In that list of ‘guide’ prices, precision-chop grass silage (for the complete job) was pegged at €110/ac (excluding VAT) – for a ‘short draw’. ‘Wagon’ silage – again for the complete job – was priced at €100/ac (excluding VAT).

Mowing and raking were priced at €20/ac and €10/ac respectively (excluding VAT).

Payment up front

Of course, the old, unspoken rules apply for farmer customers. A dinner and payment going out the gate may get you a better deal; they may also bump you up the queue for next year – provided you stick with the same contractor.

On the subject of farmer-contractor relations at silage time, take a couple of minutes to check out this video from Will Coyne; it’s well worth a look (brace yourself for some politically incorrect language).