Farmers facing major Contractor price hikes
PAC says increased fuel costs and limited credit will see charges go up sharply
Soaring fuel costs and limited credit lines are set to push contracting charges upwards in the coming months, according to the Professional Agricultural Contractors (PAC).
Here some of the association's members outline their current situation and their predictions for the months ahead.
Timmy O'Brien, from Churchtown, Co Cork, filled a 7,000-litre diesel tank at 85.78c/l including VAT 10 days ago.
"That's 10c/l dearer than it was at the same time in 2008, which was a dear year," he points out. "And it's 30c/l up on last year."
The contractor says an increase in charges is inevitable.
"Take a tractor agitating slurry using 25 litres of diesel per hour. In February 2009, I paid 44c/l for diesel excluding VAT so agitating cost [me] €11 per hour in diesel," he says. "This year I paid 75c/l excluding VAT so that hour's work cost €18.75 in diesel."
"Based on those figures, I would have to increase my charge by at least €7.50 an hour. That is based on the increase on diesel price alone."
Midlands-based contractor Tom Porter says diesel prices make up 20-25pc of the hourly charge for his digger work.