9 March 2001

CONTRACTOR UPDATE

KNOWYOURTRUECOSTS

KNOWING the accurate running costs of agricultural machinery is an essential part of a contracting business. Who would disagree? But the fact is that few really take the time to work out the actual costs involved.

In this issue of Contractor Update we analyse the running costs of a forage harvester – and discuss the results to discover whether the most economical size of machine is being operated. It is an exercise which we could all benefit from. Big may be beautiful but not necessarily the most profitable.

We also take an in depth look at the latest opportunity for contractors – the wrapper/baler combinations which have the potential to revolutionise the baled silage operation.

It is a view now shared by most baler manufacturers, several of whom already have versions commercially available. Others have prototypes under test and there are those who say they have plans on the drawing board.

But that is the future and one which we shall hear a lot more about. For the present there is the business of ditching – we profile one contractors successful penetration of this particular market – and there are also the finer points of potato harvesting to be explored.