Counting cost of the land-block commute
Tillage farmers are spending thousands of euro every year simply getting to and from the extra land-blocks they farm.
That was the stark conclusion from Teagasc research revealed at their BETTER crops open day in Wexford last week.
Almost 200 tillage farmers visited George and Ken Williamson's farm in Ambrosetown, south Wexford, to hear how farming more winter cereals had increased their profitability by €250/ha, while spreading workload and risk at harvest.
George Williamson also explained that participating in the BETTER crops programme had reduced spring barley common costs by 22pc/t, through more precise use of inputs and yield increases.
And Teagasc researcher Dermot Forristal revealed how fragmented blocks on another demonstration farm were costing an extra €20,000 a year in diesel, time and wear, when compared with land located within a mile of the farmyard.
"The cost per acre is influenced by the size of the block involved and the distance from the main yard," said Mr Forristal.
"This particular field was 21km from the main yard.