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Figuring Cost per Roll

2812 Views 46 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  ClinchValley86
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I'm also in Indiana, but raise mostly OG and fescue.

I try to do as many squares as I can, because as stated, they make me more money. But I'm honestly short on customers that want small squares every year. Even the horse people seem to be moving to rounds.

The vast majority of my sales are 5x5 round bales to locals feeding cattle. We typically get a "premium" for our rolls because almost all of our hay is extremely clean. Last year my average price for a 1100-1300 lb roll was $50-55 per bale, not including delivery. We have to justify our price to customers due to the fact that, at least in our area, almost all of the other hay on the market is full of weeds. Seems like anyone making hay around us will just roll into a pasture/field that has been untouched for years, bale it and sell it. Which is fine to a point. I guess I am doing the same on ground just acquired that I'm trying to get in shape. But I adjust the price accordingly.

While I am a young guy, just turned 26, and only been in the business for three years, it's hard for me to talk with a potential customer who just looks at the $/bale. "Why would I buy hay off of you when I can get it from Billy Bob for $40/bale?"

My take on the fertilizer cost are similar. I know I'm skimping right now, but aim to get to a place where I can throw more on and not rob the ground. But last year I only threw on $2200 on 75 acres. A lot of that was on my best square bale field. For perspective, last year I raised a total of 600 5x5 bales and 1600 small squares.
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I'm still trying to build myself up. Last year I purchased my disc mower, JD baler, and am still working on completely rebuilding a Ford 3600. These three expenses were almost 19,000 by themselves.

Outside of those, my total cost for EVERYTHING else, including everything from grease, oil, filters, fuel to repairs and fertilizer was around 18,500.

I did not have any farm insurance last year, but just added a policy a couple months ago.

I also have to correct my earlier post. Between myself and my father-in-law, we both share equipment. We baled 600 rounds total. My count was only 260.
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The squares were mine. Almost 1700 at I'd say an average price of $5/bale
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