Economics of Forage Harvest and Storage Systems by user002

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									Economics of Forage Harvest and Storage Systems
•Forage Harvesters •Silos

Is it Time to Replace my Forage Harvester?
• Is labor availability an issue? • Is timeliness a problem with your current equipment? • Are your repair costs high? • How many acres of forages do you harvest?

Solutions to Labor Scarcity and Poor Harvest Timeliness
• Purchase higher capacity forage harvester • Change crop rotation • Custom hire

Are your repair costs high?
• Current forage harvesters are designed to be more reliable and have fewer repairs over their lifetimes than older models • Newer models of pull-type forage harvesters have an expected life of 2,500 hours compared to 2,000 for older models • Newer models of SP forage harvesters have an expected life of 4,000 hours compared to 2,500 for older models

Accumulated Repair Costs for Newer vs. Older Forage Harvesters
$900

Total repair cost per $1,000 of purchase price

$800 $700 $600 new pull-type $500 $400 $300 $200 $100 $0 new SP old pull-type old SP

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Harvester age (hours)

4000

Hourly Repair Costs for Newer vs. Older Forage Harvesters
$0.80

Hourly repair cost per $1,000 of purchase price

$0.70 $0.60 $0.50 $0.40 $0.30 $0.20 $0.10 $0.00 new pull-type new SP old pull-type old SP

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Harvester age (hours)

4000

Forage Harvester Comparisons:
• 2-row towed ($25,900) • 2-row self-propelled ($159,900) • 3-row self-propelled ($165,600) • 6-row self-propelled ($236,600)
Prices from Univ. of MN, “Minnesota Farm Machinery Economic Cost Estimates for 2001”

Managing Machinery Costs
• Variable costs are those which occur from operating the machinery
– – – – repairs labor fuel lubrication

• Fixed costs are those which result from owning the machinery
– – – – depreciation interest insurance housing

Hourly Repair Costs for Four Forage Harvesters
$60

$50

Hourly repair cost

$40 2-row pull-type $30 2-row SP 3-row SP 6-row SP $20

$10

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Harvester age (hours)

4000

Accumulated Repair Costs for Four Forage Harvesters
$120,000

$100,000

Total repair cost

$80,000 2-row pull-type $60,000 2-row SP 3-row SP 6-row SP $40,000

$20,000

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Harvester age (hours)

4000

Hourly Repair, Fuel, and Labor Costs for Four Forage Harvesters
$90 $80 $70

Hourly cost

$60 2-row pull-type $50 $40 $30 $20 $10 $0 2-row SP 3-row SP 6-row SP

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Harvester Age (hours)

4000

Field Capacity (acres/hour)
Harvester Width Speed Field Efficiency Field Capacity 2-row pull type 5 ft. 3.0 mph 70% 1.27

(Range: 1.0-5.0) (Range: 65-80%) 2-row SP 5 ft. 3.5 mph (Range:1.5-6.0) 3-row SP 7.5 ft. 3.5 mph (Range:1.5-6.0) 6-row SP 15 ft. 3.5 mph (Range:1.5-6.0) 70% (Range: 65-80%) 70% (Range: 65-80%) 70% (Range: 65-80%) 4.45 2.23 1.48

Repair, Fuel, and Labor Costs per Acre for Four Forage Harvesters
$40 $35 $30

Cost per acre

$25 $20 $15 $10 $5 $0

2-row pull-type 2-row SP 3-row SP 6-row SP

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4000

Total Cost per Acre for Four Forage Harvesters, 10-year life
400 350

Total Cost per Acre

300 250 200 150 100 50 0 2-row pull-type 2-row SP 3-row SP 6-row SP

$47
100 125 150 175 200 250 300 350 400 450 500 600

$54

$42
800 900 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1600 1700 1800

$30

Acres/year

700

Silage Storage Alternatives
• Tower silos • Bunker silos • Silage bags

Tower Silo
• Silage can be 50 to 65% moisture • Packing of silage due to weight from top • Various sizes available (50-4000 tons) • Minimal exposure to weather

Bunker Silo
• Sizing is very flexible • Silage can be of higher moisture than tower • Requires more labor to pack down • Requires plastic and tires to cover • Increased exposure to weather

Silage Bags
• • • • • • Normal size: 150-200 ft. long by 9 ft. diameter Minimal amount of labor required May wear out tractor more quickly Spoilage due to weather or rodents Easy to regulate silage removal Takes up space

Summary of Silo Cost Factors
• Structure • Equipment (tractor and special equipment) • Labor (How much time and when does action occur) • Fuel and lubricants • Plastic • Dry Matter Loss (direct loss of silage value)

Annual cost of storage of 384 tons DM
50 45 40 35 Structure

$/T DM

30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Tower Bunker Bag

Equipment Labor Fuel & Lube Plastic Dry Matter Loss

Source: “Choosing Forage Storage Facilities”, B.J. Holmes, Univ. of Wisconsin

Annual cost of storage of 3,072 tons DM
40 35 30 25 Structure Equipment Labor Fuel & Lube Plastic Dry Matter Loss 10 5 0 Tower Bunker Bag

$/T DM

20 15

Source: “Choosing Forage Storage Facilities”, B.J. Holmes, Univ. of Wisconsin

Silage Cost Management Resources
• www.uwex.edu/ces/crops/uwforage/storage
– Includes a spreadsheet and documentation to analyze costs of different storage choices

• www.silo.org/costcomparison.xls
– Spreadsheet tool that allows for comparison of costs of tower, bunker, and bags


								
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